For the longest time I thought prayer was done a certain way. I thought getting up in the morning with my coffee and devotional was how it was “supposed to look” when I talked to God. Don’t get me wrong, it is gravely important for me to spend my first moments with God everyday. It prepares my heart for whatever may come as soon as the day gets going. But then I would go on with the rest of my day without Him. Basically, I would just check it off my list and I was done. I felt good about it (no doubt) but I was still lacking something.
As much as I thought I was “relying” on God, I wasn’t. I was relying on the way I thought it should look, when I thought I should do it and made it part of my to-do list like a total control freak! It all relied on me. God was probably thinking, “thanks for penciling me in your planner sweet child of mine.” And not only that, I wasn’t using prayer the way he wanted me to. For example, I would pray for my marriage like “God please bless our marriage and the way we communicate so we can understand each other clearly. Please guard us from any temptation that may come our way. Be our chord of three. Amen.” While that’s a great prayer, I wasn’t praying for the specifics at all in our marriage! I wasn’t praying intentionally.
Think about a relationship that you are really intentional about. Maybe it’s a boyfriend, your husband, your parents or even your child. Do you check in with them often? Is their input and feelings on things important to you? Do you ask them for their advice? Well that’s how it should be with God too!
When we pray with great intention, prayer has the power to change not only our situation or the person we are praying for, but it has the power to change us! That’s what is so POWERFUL. Using prayer in the morning to fuel our day is good. But using it to really communicate our hearts is life changing. God wants us in constant communication with Him. He wants us to ask Him for wisdom when we don’t know what to do. He wants to settle us when we can’t sleep. He wants to calm us down right in the middle of a heated conversation. Do you call on Him like that? I know I wasn’t.
God knows my desire, as of late, has been to be a more loving and present mother. And because of the awareness of how much he wants me to rely on Him, he has really shown up. Just the other day in the middle of doing fifty things at once, one of my children asked me to do something I didn’t feel like doing. Typically I would have done it begrudgingly and then would have been in a bad, stressed out mood for the rest of the night. But instead, I turned to God. I literally had a temper tantrum with Him. I looked up, stomped my feet, gritted my teeth and said “I don’t freaking feel like it God! This is going to put me in a bad mood and I don’t want to be in a bad mood. Please, please, please! Help me with my heart.” I never talked to God like that before. I always wanted to look “pleasant” coming to God. But God knows the good, the bad and the ugly, so what the heck was I hiding from? In all seriousness, I came out of the bedroom, the stress was lifted and I truly had a better attitude about it. I don’t know if it was because I got to let off some steam to Him or if it was His grace along with my honesty. Either way, I realized what a huge help it was.
I’ve also always had a tongue of fire with previous relationships. For many reasons, I lived in a constant state of defensiveness and it always made things worse. Thankfully, I’ve become aware of that in my marriage. God has really shown me that that’s not who I am nor who he created me to be. In my new understanding to always rely on Him, I’ve asked Him for His wisdom so I can carry it with me when I come face to face with moments that make me want to defend myself. I’ve also asked for Him to give me restraint with my words. Lately, in the middle of what could get heated, He comes right beside me and gives me restraint. He’s been giving me the realization in that very moment that what I say may prove my point, but will only make things worse. Right in the middle of that hard and heated moment, I hear Him say “it’s just not worth it.” And because of the intentionality of my prayers in this area, it’s changing me, my marriage and my husband. I saw it just this morning.
So ladies, I’m not sure what it is that you are fighting for today. Whether it’s to be a better mom, friend, wife, co-worker etc., let God in on it. Rely on Him fully and intentionally. Ask Him for the wisdom and strength at each moment you need it. Be in constant conversation with Him. Because I’m telling you, a praying woman is a powerful woman.
“I did not give you a spirit of fear. But I gave you a spirit of love, peace , power and a sound mind.” – 2 Timothy 1:7
Bless the woman reading this. Remind her to come to you right in the middle of her mess. Let her come to you with truth and trust, knowing that it doesn’t have to look a certain way for you to hear her. We know that relying on ourselves gets us no where. But we know there is real power in relying on you. We come to you humbly Lord, asking for your grace, mercy and wisdom to be all you’ve created us to be. Show us our identity in you. We ask this in your holy name, Jesus. Amen.