When I am tempted to complain about God’s lack of presence, I remind myself that God has much more reason to complain about my lack of presence. I reserve a few minutes a day for God, but how many times do I drown out or ignore the quiet voice that speaks to my conscience and my life? “Here I am! I stand at the door and knock,” have become familiar words from Revelation, often stretched into an evangelistic message. But Jesus addressed those words to a church full of believers. How many times have I failed to hear the soft knock on the door and thus missed God’s invitation. Philip Yancey, “Prayer”
For as long as I can I remember prayer has been a part of my life. Kneeling by my bed as early as 7 or 8 years old I don’t recall what I prayed for, but I do remember having the assurance that God heard me. This is one area where I have not wavered in my faith. I consider it a tremendous gift from God and it humbles me greatly because I know it isn’t anything I did on my own, but only possible through the power of His grace and mercy.
There are other areas, however, I continue to struggle with greatly such as fear. Right alongside the faith that He hears, is the fear that has nipped at my heels constantly throughout my life. We all have different gifts and different weaknesses. Some struggle with severe doubt that God hears their prayers and some like me struggle with the fear of failure, of not measuring up. Whatever our particular weakness is, we know that the root cause is lack of faith. How do we get that faith? One way that helps me by hearing the word of God.
Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ. Romans 10:17
There are many things we can hear that stir our fears up but a study diet of the Word causes us to rest in Him who has all things under control, even when it seems that chaos reigns all around us. In a way, I am grateful for my fears because they have made me cling to God more than someone with loads of self-confidence. If you have doubts today, I would encourage you to keep on praying, keep on believing. Know that He hears you in spite of our weaknesses. Even the Apostle Paul was not exempt:
Therefore, in order to keep me from becoming conceited, I was given a thorn in my flesh, a messenger of Satan, to torment me. Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 2 Corinthians 12:7-9
We can also be comforted knowing Jesus is praying for us too! “My prayer is not for them alone, I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message.” John 17:20
Here is a question, is hope that He hears our prayers enough even when our faith is weak?
I think of all the ways prayer has changed me over the years, growing my patience, bringing me closer to the Lord and to other people, causing my faith to increase, and helping others not lose heart, for these reasons and others I continue my count of blessings today……a Mom who taught me the importance of prayer, Sunday school teachers and others who planted seeds in my early life and sacrificed their time for me, friends who were role-models of prayer, and a Dad who became a man of prayer through my Mom’s prayers, a very best friend who shares my faith as we share our doubts and fears together in prayer……And God who is always listening….#527-537