When Thrive Global asked me to share what prayer meant to me I immediately thought back to Bible college. During that time we learned, like most college students, about ourselves and our view of God and others. It didn’t take long for us to find ourselves in need. In moments of absence (feeling lonely, out of control or without something we desired) we felt a pull and a reminder for the literal connection to God. That’s where prayer comes in. We can pray for a host of reasons including confession, gratitude, request and more.
The concept of prayer can be as simple as talking to God and as profound as changing our mind, mood and improving our health. People of faith often use clinically proven tools that include prayer, meditation and forgiveness. We can find relief when we tell ourselves the truth and accept that we are not fully in control. With faith there can be freedom in knowing that we don’t have to hold it all together.
What Prayer Means to Me
Since I didn’t write the book on prayer I would like to share what it means to me. This morning when I went for a run it was still dark outside. While it was dark, there stood the moon. Amidst the artificial street lights I thought to myself, “Who hung the moon?” I kept running and said, “Not I.” This little interchange in my mind led to me saying, “God, you created the moon and set it in place.” I like the moments when, in prayer and communication with God I can feel so small and yet, significant and secure in His love and leading.
Through prayer I can confess my need, brokenness and desires. I can literally cast off my pain and profess exactly where I am in any state of mind. I find myself encouraged to hear stories of those in life-altering traumatic situations that would seek God their Father in prayer. I see this in the lives of heroes like Corrie Ten Boom, Martin Luther King Jr. and Brennan Manning. Each of these people would say the connection to God is what had sustained them when they felt like they had lost it all. I can pray for my wife, children, in-laws, clients and more. There is literally nothing off the table and it’s because of that I can pray throughout the day. This helps shape my worldview and sense of identity and purpose in the world. Truly, amidst changes, great loss and what appears to be uncertainty – I am not alone. I have prayed in moments of joy and moments of utter grief. Because of His presence I am never alone.
The imagery I often view in prayer is the idea of carrying baggage or burdensome luggage and laying it down before God. The challenge, I have found is not necessarily laying it down, it’s not picking it back up after the time of prayer. We are encouraged to literally cast off our burdens and anxiety because He cares for us. He that hung the moon also longs to connect with me through prayer. Here’s a simple prayer for today,
Father, thank You for loving me. I receive your love and am your child. I pray for those in need of your touch in marriage, those sick, and those lonely. I pray that through the work I do and my role as a husband and father you would do the supernatural for our good and your glory. I am trusting You and love You. Thank you for loving me.Amen.