Wednesday, February 4, 2015

We pray too much!!!

Tonight is our church's kick off to a Year of Prayer emphasis. Tonight they will host the first church wide prayer service at 7PM.  Our dwarfs,  who are very involved in our regular church youth programs on Wednesday nights, are trying to wiggle out of this evening of prayer.  (Really it is at the most going to be one hour, hour and a half tops...)

Some of the dwarfs are on board, and any of you that know our dwarfs will easily be able to identify who is willing to attend the meeting and who the following naysayers are. 

This is the conversation at home today as we are preparing for the evening of suspended youth activities and the corporate evening of prayer event after school.

D1 - "Why do we have to go to the prayer service?  Can't we just stay home?" 
Me - " No, you can't stay home, we all need to work our our prayer lives."
D2 - " Why,  we pray ALL the time now as it is."
Me- " No, we do not pray ALL the time, we are situational prayers."
D1 - "What do you mean?"
D2 - "I don't understand, we really do pray ALL the time in our house." 
Me - "Tell me when do we pray?  What does ALL look like in your opinion"
D2 - " We pray at breakfast, lunch and dinner and on the way to school in the morning."
Me- staring down the dwarf that is claiming he prays at lunch time in a public school cafeteria setting.." You pray at lunchtime, at school every day?" 
D2- " Well no, only lunches that I eat home and you make me." 
Me- "D1, you got anything for me?  When do you pray? "
D1 -" Not really, Well sometimes at bedtime."
Me -" okay boys, this is situational praying.  While we have trained you to pray at specific points in your day, and those prayers are important and have value, it is not enough prayer for your day. How often does the Bible say we should be praying?" 
D1 - " when we need something?"
D2 -" I don't think God cares how much we pray, just so we are do it sometimes"
Me - " The Bible says we are to pray without ceasing.  What does without ceasing mean? "
              Dumbfounded,  they both have no idea what this means. 

Me- "We all need to learn to pray without ceasing, without stopping,  throughout our day. Praying just when we eat, or just when need something or when someone is sick, that is situational praying." Teaching you to pray at specific points in the day in no means that we pray too much.  In reality, we really pray too little at our house. 

D1- " Are you sure this is not one of those rules you are making up because you want us to go to church tonight?"
 Me- "You think I would do that?  Lie about what the Bible says to trick you into going to church?"
D1 and D2 in irritated unison- " Nooo..."  

 Well here is my proof for D1 and D2 : 

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18English Standard Version (ESV) 

16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.

 A great reminder for us all, that praying in or about specific situations is good to discipline to have, is an encouragement for others if you are interceding on their behalf , or petitioning the Lord for ourselves or for others, but to have a relationship with the Lord takes consistent ceasless prayer.  Prayer about all things, the little things and the big things, just as you would converse in a relationship with your spouse or a friend.  These conversations (prayers) with the Lord serve to build a solid relationship. The more time you spend with Lord in conversation, the easier and quicker you will be able to determine his will for your life in all things at all times.  

A great reminder for me that while we model situational prayer well, some of my dwarfs, are missing the lesson that we are really trying to instill in them.  So we will be a bit more diligent and consistent in our lessons to them, and living out loud prayer, without ceasing throughout our day.   

 Until then  D1 and D2 and I will be at a crossroads about how much is "too" much prayer. 

 You Really Cant Make this Stuff Up!  

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