Monday, June 22, 2009

Consequences of prayer: Thy will be done

I've been thinking about the consequences of prayer...
Sometimes when we (I) pray and have in the back of my head how I believe (we) God will answer the prayer. I put Him in a box. When I don't see the prayer answered in such-and-such a way I believe the prayer isn't answered. So I keep praying. I keep expecting God to jump through my hoops. Apparently I believe my wisdom and imagination and foresight are greater than God's!

I've been thinking about the consequences of prayer ever since I viewed the movie Slumdog Millionaire. The movie opens in the streets of India-poverty beyond what any westerner could imagine. But it's real. I've seen it in Calcutta and Patna and Karachi. As I viewed the condition of millions I prayed. I'm sure thousands, if not millions of others have prayed over the plight of India's poor. Fast-forward in the movie and the main character is working for a telephone company. His office handles the customer's calls from around the world. You know when you are having an issue with your phone, the bill, whatever and you dial that 1-800 number? Someone in India, or wherever, is answering that call. I've complained about the thick accents on some of the phone company's representatives but not until Slumdog Millionaire did I connect my prayer of 5-10-15 years ago to the fact that jobs sent from our shores to India have lifted thousands, perhaps millions, of Indians out of poverty. I complained about the accent but didn't connect that here was God answering prayer.

I've been thinking about the consequences of prayer in light of the current situation in Iran. What is God doing? How are decade-long prayers being answered? What are our prayers today and how is God arranging the times to answer those prayers in the future?

God is not in a box. His schemes are broad, deep and wide. He sees the past, present and future. He knows how one situation effects another - personal, national and international. I will keep praying but now echo the words of the Lord's prayer: Thy will be done. I want to know what His will is and trust in that. It's short. It's concise: Thy will be done. It releases, it frees and allows God to work His wonders. I want to stand and observe His handiwork, knowing nd proclaiming it is His handiwork working among the nations.


Anonymous said...

i should never be afraid of the outcome of prayer but i am, i cannot anymore count on prayer to solve my problems because lately it causes them
and i regret praying, there is a verse that has become an oxymoron
ye have not because ye ask not
hmm in my life its ye have not because ye asked
bottom line
when i pray i will not accept the opposite to happen
and outspoken christian after christians
telling me it wasnt gods fault
it was mine
my fault for what
the only choice i made was to pray
so they are right
its my fault i prayed
bottom line
god is not this peace love everything is good
persona from the 60s
god is a mass murderer
he killed nations
he killed people
for the actions of some
bottom line
god is a jealous god
and heck needs to get over it
and this beyond blatant double standards
to me god has no character at all
and i was raised in church and all that
god is the biggest dissapointment in my life
and heck
i will not be taking blame for things i had nothing to do with
expected prayer to help
and things went from ok to the titanic disaster happening again

all i know
when i pray
bad things happen

all things work together for the good
for good of who

i dont trust god
because i cant trust him
what matters to me matters to me
and thats that

and hes not more precious than silver yada yada
becuase i could care less about silver!!!!!

Barb said...

dear anonymous, i've been troubled by your comment and don't really know how to respond other than with the trite God's ways are not our ways and to trust in His ways. I don't believe our prayers ever turn out for ill. God is not I dream of Jeannie and doesn't do whatever we ask. Sometimes silence is the answer and sometimes answers take years to hear and see. But I do know that God is for my good, for everyone's good really. I know God works all things out for our good and his glory. I know he knows the beginning and the end and that my sight is very poor, my wisdom is almost nil.
Your accusations about God are powerful. About the only one I agree with is that God is a jealous God - because he loves us so much and it breaks him to see his children destroy themselves and others. I do not see God as a mass murderer, killing nations. That's man's choice.

Oftentimes when I pray it changes my perspective. When I soak myself in that time of conversing, speaking and listening, my eyes become more attune to what my creator is doing in and through me. I then realize it isn't about me, but it is and that he is working wondrous things for the good.

I am sorry you see God as a disappointment in your life. Obviously you are carrying some massive burden, some past sorrows. YOu can not carry that burden of " when I pray bad things happen". wow - you must be pretty powerful then.

I'll end here by just saying God is for you. God does know your beginning, middle and end. He can and is working wonders out - minute details and the grand scheme of things. it's his way. it's his desire to be in relationship with you - joyful, honest, real, intimate relationship. I know that to my deepest core.