Would you enjoy a relationship with someone who was always talking, never listening? How about if that someone was always asking something from you and never telling you “thanks” when you came through for him? Now let’s suppose that your conversations degenerated into a mere recitation of demands? If you loved that person enough, you might stick with them, but your relationship wouldn’t grow or be healthy.
Think about your conversations with God. Do they consist mainly of a recitation of circumstances you want to have changed and things you want to receive? Maybe you include the health and well-being of others you care about — but are your prayers mostly about you? I’ve been reading through my prayer journal, and I can’t escape the sad fact that most of it consists of moaning about me.
Good thing that God loves me. Otherwise He wouldn’t put up with me at all!
So let’s look at prayer from the opposite direction for a moment. What does God want to hear?
We have a clue. The book of Psalms is a collection of prayers. We can see in them the things God longs to hear from His children. There is plenty of moaning. That’s okay! God wants to hear the burdens of your heart, and the perfect place to take your concerns is before the Almighty God who can do something about them!
But the Psalms also are about confession, praise, thanksgiving, rehearsing God’s wonderful attributes in His presence, and, most of all, expressions of love. Don’t know how to pray? Open to Psalms and start praying those prayers to Him from your heart. You will be speaking the words He most wants to hear!
Oh — and you might also try being quiet and listening for a change. It’s very likely that God has something He would like to say to you, if you would only stop and pay attention.
Eating to live and living for Christ,
Susan Jordan Brown