My prayers can be a bit pretentious, even when I’m alone. I “clean up” and enter in with thanksgiving and praise quickly before my mind drifts to what’s really going on in my life. Focus! Concentrate! I straighten my posture and try again when I’d really rather slump, whine, beg and cuddle up to my comforter and rest in his grace and mercy.
That’s exactly what I’m supposed to be doing!
Why must I act healed when I’m with the doctor? He can’t heal what I’ve bandaged and propped up as “fixed.”
I must go honest. I must go broken. And, I need to point out every hurt, every negative thought, all the things that aren’t as they should be. Why? So that He can examine and heal them.
Don’t you want to be healed? Yes. Yes. Me, too.
According to Paul E. Miller, author of A Praying LIfe, we’re getting this prayer thing all wrong. He’s here to help us get it right!
First, you’ve got to come messy.
Don’t try to get the prayer right; just tell God where you are and what’s on your mind. That’s what little children do. They come as they are, runny noses and all. Like the disciples, they just say what is on their minds. (p. 32)
Second, you need to bring your worries.
We are often so busy and overwhelmed that when we slow down to pray, we don’t know where our hearts are. We don’t know what troubles us. So, oddly enough, we might have to worry before we pray. Then our prayers will make sense. They will be about our real lives. (p. 33)
And, third, just be yourself.
You have to begin with what is real. Jesus didn’t come for the righteous. He came for sinners. All of us qualify. The very things we try to get rid of — our weariness, our distractedness, our messiness — are what get us in the front door! Give Jesus the opportunity to work on the real you. (p. 33)
Last week, I fasted my spiritual mask. Fasting means to deny yourself something. Instead of going to God all “dressed up” I went just as I was. No fronts. No spiritual mask. Since I put my mask away, I’ve been trying to pray from the deepest part of me….praying all the things He knows anyway but I’m too “holy” to say. It hasn’t been pretty, but it’s been honest. It feels good to come just as I am.
Ladies, we don’t have to put on make-up, girdles, and press-on nails to talk to Jesus. He wants us naked and ashy. And, He’ll cover us with his love, grace, mercy and peace.
Go talk to Him right now.
Messy, worried, and real.