So last week I talked about how I realized that I am a double agent. I outlined 3 steps of how I eased into this role. Now it's time to begin digging out.
Today, let's talk about prayer. I believe it to be the most powerful weapon in our arsenal. In fact, it's where our only power lies. Because through prayer, we approach the throne of grace. In prayer, we have interpretation by the Holy Spirit, and intercession by Jesus. God praying for us. If that doesn't blow you away, nothing will.
I’m not asking you to take them out of the world, but to keep them safe from the evil one. They do not belong to this world any more than I do. Make them holy by your truth; teach them your word, which is truth.
- John 17:15-17
And so this past week I have been leaning fully on Christ to try and learn how I can pray for myself without being demanding or petulant or insubmissive.
I learned that Jesus taught us to pray for our needs, as His model prayer includes, “Give us this day our daily bread”, “Deliver us from evil”, and “Forgive us our trespasses”. (Matthew 6)
I was reminded of Christ's prayer in the Garden, when He, who knew and accepted the full plan of God with it's consequences and rewards, begged in desperation, “Let this cup pass from me.” (Matthew 26) Drops of blood mingled with unmitigated fear and sorrow.
Why did He say these words? Why did He pray this way? Was our Savior selfish? Demanding? Petulant? Was He not willing to submit to the will of the Father?
He prayed this way because He had a relationship with God. Because this relationship had no walls, no boundaries, no masks. He shared because He knew that intimacy of holding nothing back was what God craved and what He Himself desperately needed.
Because even though He knew the cup would not pass from Him, Jesus also never doubted that His sorrow mattered, and was meant to be shared. God sat with Him in that garden on that fateful night. While His friends, His brothers, slept from sheer exhaustion, Jesus was not alone. He was comforted by the presence of His Father, who though He knew this plan needed to play out also longed to spare His Son from the pain and the anguish to come.
Jesus prayed because He needed that connection to His Abba.
This is a huge revelation for me, because of course it causes me to compare the way I pray for my own self. I pray with a mask on. “I'm ok, Lord, let's just talk about the people I love.” I approach the throne on behalf of others, but keep my own true self walled away, off limits. I have become so convinced that praying for myself in any detail is equivalent to not submitting, that I have lost that depth of intimacy with my God.
So why should I share? Just for the simple pleasure of sharing. For the connection that is made when the relationship goes both ways. For the comfort that only comes when I let the walls down and share the space in my head and heart.
Because He is my Abba, Father. Because I love Him as much as He loves me.
And that change starts right now. I'm adding me to my War Room, so I'm sure to remember. It's important to pray for myself. The details matter because I do. And so, Dear One, do you.
Abba, Father, I am afraid. It's easy to feel alone, especially in the times like now, when the pain closes in and the dark grows bolder. Please stay with me. Please keep me from the evil one. Please write Your beautiful truth on my aching heart. I love You. In Jesus' Name, Amen...
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May God Bless You,