Sunday, February 25, 2018

Why Bother with Prayer when prayers don't always come true?

Luke 11:1-9 by Rev. Susan Lukey
Series:Why Bother - Winter 2018

I love to pray. I can’t imagine life without praying. Prayer weaves in and out of my day, part of the fabric of my life. Yet, even though prayer is so much a part of who I am, it is not easy to explain what prayer is. Let me start by saying what prayer is not! Prayer is not like giving a wish list to Santa or a to-do list to a spouse. It is not saying, Okay, here God, these are the things I need done; now get busy. God is not our personal robot, or our servant. Too often, I hear people say that prayer doesn’t work and that God doesn’t answer prayer. That is rooted in this kind of thinking – that if I pray it, God should just do it. However, there are some things I’ve prayed for that I am now very glad that God didn’t just do. So prayer is not a to-do list or wish list for God. Prayer is not magic. It is not saying, “Abracadabra” and having something appear. It is not about saying the right words so that your prayer is answered, and trying different formulations of words until you get the result you hope for. God is not a genie in a bottle ready to grant us three wishes Prayer is not negotiation. There are times when we will find ourselves praying, okay God, I’ll do this, if you’ll do that. Or I promise never again to do that, if just once you do this. It’s natural to pray this way. It comes from the deep emotions we may be feeling, but that is not how prayer works. We don’t negotiate with God or bargain with God. God loves us. God is working with us. Prayer is not manipulation. Prayer isn’t about doing & saying the right things so that we can back God into our corner, into our way of seeing things. We don’t have to be the best defense lawyer in the world, pleading our case before God. It isn’t about trying to trick God into believing what we are saying. God loves us.
Duration:23 mins 55 secs