Friday, May 20, 2016

A Praying Life: Chapters 23-24

(A few friends and I are reading this book together.  Each week we will read two chapters and on Friday I will post my comments from the reading.  Others may add their thoughts in the comments section.  If you are interested in reading this book as well, here is the link for the Kindle version of the book.)

Chapters 23-24

- "We don't like the messiness of unanswered prayer - or answers that are different from what we requested."  (Pg. 196, Loc. 2479)  The word "messiness" is a good description.  When God doesn't answer the way we expect/want, we wonder if He is answering no.  Should we continue praying or should we take His "no" and stop praying?  We can be tempted to wonder if something is wrong with God.  Is there something wrong with me?  Messiness.  I was helped by his description that prayer is not magic, that it would mean nothing if God answered immediately every one of our prayers.  I had not thought of it from that perspective.

- When talking about the answer to their prayer that Kim speak, he said it was "work, prayer, mistakes, frustration, more work, more prayer, breakthrough, work, prayer, and so on."  (Pg. 198, Loc. 2505)  He makes similar mentions a couple more times in these two chapters.  He describes prayer as God's weaving His story.  The author is helping me to see the interconnectedness of prayer with the other parts of my life.  I don't think I would have said prayer was completely separate, but his explanations have helped me to see that I have separated it to differing degrees in my practice.  Said otherwise, I'm seeing that the formula isn't always simply [Prayer + Waiting], but it can include many other things (repentance, working) that all impact each other.

- "Often when you think everything has gone wrong, it's just that you're in the middle of a story.  If you watch the stories God is weaving in your life, you, like Joseph, will begin to see the patterns."  (Pg. 203, Loc. 2596)  May God open my eyes to His weaving the details of my life!

- "We can dream big because God is big."  (Pg. 206, Loc. 2617)  Yes ... but my question resurfaces.  Earlier in the paragraph he discusses the reality of hope.  He uses Abraham and Sarah having a son, Joseph's brothers bowing before him and David receiving the kingdom as examples.  I'll repeat my mental speed bump- each of these had God's specific Word.  Am I to hope differently in areas in which I don't have His guarantee?
I've had my say, what say you?

Discussion on Chapters 25-26

1 comment:

  1. I thought the chart on pg.198 was a very good set of parallels. You can see how it really does matter one's perspective on God's involvement in his life. If I really believe God is in control & constantly working in me & for me, then I'll be evidencing the actions & attitudes on the right side of the chart. If I don't see or trust in God's “story” for me, then I'll be on the left side.