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December 3, 2017

Simple Prayer


I've heard preachers tell people to only pray according to the Scriptures. I guess I agree in a sense, but if I did that my conversations with God would be rare and honestly disingenuous. I usually bring stuff to God that's pretty much just me messing up again or me being fearful again. I've heard some say don't pray "God be with me" reasoning that God already made us this promise (Heb. 13:5). I disagree. I pray everyday that God will be with my family, my wife and kids. I'll admit I often pray this out of  anxiety and sometimes just out of habit, but I always truly desire our lives to be saturated with the presence of my God. He is a watchman guarding our lives with a ready sword. He is a shield around us that no enemy can penetrate.

Foster encourages us to come to God with our "Simple prayers." We don't need to get our lives all together first, we don't need to make sure we pray right. Like a loving parent, he just want us to come to him with all our crazy self-serving thoughts, frustrations, and selfish requests. He is more than capable of having that conversation with us. Foster says simple prayer is the "prayer of beginning again." I've felt that beginning again with God so many times. Its not until we're willing to be open with God allowing the real condition of our hearts to be exposed that we can start moving forward. Foster makes the point that "the only way we move beyond 'self-centered prayer' (if indeed we ever do) is by going through it, not by making a detour around it." I believe the only way to see our relationship with God grow through prayer is to practice C. S. Lewis' advice and "lay before Him what is in us, not what ought to be in us."

I want to encourage you to come to God in prayer just as you are. Bring all your faults, fears, and failures before the Lord. Cast your cares on him for he cares for you (1 Peter 5:7). This is how we begin the adventure of prayer. This is how we grow in an ongoing relationship with our loving Father.