Praying for Bagels
7:08 AM and I'm rushing out the door. Sure, I'm only 8 minutes behind, but that's 8 minutes too late to eat breakfast at home. I'm rarely hungry for breakfast, but as irony has it, I was starving this morning. Internal dialogue: "God, please let those leftover bagels still be in the fridge at work."Did he deliver? Yes, he did. "Look at God," as my friend LaRonda would have chimed in had she already been in the office.One sesame seed bagel with veggie cream cheese, please.
As I laughed to myself over my trivial prayer for free carbs, I thought "I can pray for bagels, but when it really matters to be praying, why is it so hard?" I met a girl once whose prayer life was so extreme that I truly believe that her and her fiancee probably prayed over which type of cereal to get when it was crunch time in the grocery store. "God, would you have us select the 2% milk or is it in your will that we bless ourselves with skim?" I guess what I'm saying here is that too often, people (I) throw up prayers for decisions or outcomes that in the grand scheme of things should be left to chance, deductive reasoning or common sense. Not that he isn't able, but we all know that those bagels were still in the fridge when I left at 4 PM yesterday. God did not ascend them from Bruegger's and into the fridge this morning on my behalf.
I've been faced with some tough life situations lately. People close to me have been faced with tough life situations lately. Death, doubt, separation, divorce, sickness, infertility, disorders, anxiety, fear. Yet, unlike in my hunger.. my first reaction isn't to pray, it's to complain. Round up my best friends, we have a situation and I need to vent!! I try to pray a few times about things, but then I feel like "okay, that's enough. he knows." But is it? If it's that important to me, why am I essentially giving up so easily? If the situation consumes my thoughts, why is it okay to quit asking for help?
Maybe I feel like my prayers aren't "good enough." God knows I HATE praying out loud in groups....especially when I follow someone long winded or verbose. "Thank you for today. Please be with me tomorrow. Thanks for pizza. Amen." --me, at some point in life. But as long as we approach him, not one person's prayers are more validated than another's. Not one!
My bagel was a reminder to me this morning of what we could all stand to be reminded of regularly. Keep praying. Have faith. Our God is good, and sovereign and loves us. We shouldn't worry, but should trust him, seek him and not be afraid to ASK. I've always heard that we should be fervent in our prayers. He will answer them in his way and time, and he will not forget you when you're in your valleys.
It's certainly okay to ask for God to part the "red sea" of rush hour traffic, but how much more important is it to ask him to work in your life and the life of others who are struggling with the seemingly unfair and unexpected turns of life?
"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you."
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18