Prayer: I think my prayers have changed over the course of the past 3 months. If my counting is right, this is week 15 of the 30-week journey in prayer blogging. (I’ll have to count that later to see how accurate that is. It is right around there.)
How prayer has changed me so far
2 ways come to mind with how my prayer has changed, in its emphasis anyways, that I start with gratitude, giving thanks for the gift of life, giving thanks for the next breath that I am getting to breathe. That’s something I can always thank you God for. And I want to keep thanking you for that. It puts my heart and soul in the right posture and orientation for everything else. It’s very simple, but it is very anchoring. I need a good anchor like that.
In praying conversationally, I’ve also come to realize more that you are a safe place for me to talk with you Father. I often feel like I don’t have a regular time to get to talk with someone in person about whatever crosses my mind and all the variety of feelings and moods that I go through in a day. I don’t have to hold back so much. I’m learning and begin to feel more that you do not condemn or judge me for all my shortcomings and failures. The judgement already was taken care of by Jesus on the cross. That’s why He was born. That’s why we celebrate Christmas.
This has been one of the hardest years in my life so far. But it’s not that hard, compared to what some other people have had to go thru. Or, are going thru. Every person has challenges of some kind. A lot of people seem to hide it better than me. There are some that self-medicate with things like alcohol or drugs or whatever the world has to offer. Those are very short-term temporary escapes. Costly to partake. Costly with consequences too. Help me to avoid those temptations. Pray that every single day. Not the alcohol or drugs part. But you know, there are things in this earthly world that provoke my attention.
More Confessions to Unload
I’m seeing confession as something I share with you in confidence and you Father will forgive me and you will help me. Confession isn’t just limited to breaking rules or violating a commandment. Confession isn’t only for bad ethics or immoral behaviors. Or even thoughts or feelings, though I do confess I have too many of those thoughts and feelings that I don’t want and that I don’t find helpful. They’re such a drag.
Confession can also include anything that comes to mind that is keeping me away from you God and your best. Confession has helped me to recalibrate my thoughts and heart and soul to point myself back to you God. I confess anything that comes to mind that is keeping me from living well, keeping me from obeying you, keeping me from experiencing the abundant life of joy you’ve promised.
I too confess that I have a difficult time translating the spiritual truths I’ve learned in theology and read in the Bible into my everyday life here and now. Yes, on the one hand, everything is spiritual. And, also, things here on planet earth in the here and now are physical and tangible and have laws and properties of their own. I confess that lots of life doesn’t make sense to me, where I feel comfortable and confident about things.
Thinking My Confusion Out Loud
Sorry, readers, I’ve got a few specific things on my mind right now that I’m not typing out. And, it is my tendency to be unspecific in my thoughts and feelings anyways; that means often I wouldn’t be able to explain what I’m not understanding. I consciously tell myself that what I don’t understand are maybe things that I don’t need to understand.
Getting back to Christmas
Christmas is just a few days away. Let’s put my heart and soul, thoughts and feelings, to this occasion that matters far more than me and my confusing confessions.
Oh how wonderful, God, that you would shine your light into our dark world so we can see. Open my eyes to see more of your goodness that you have brought in and through the person of baby Jesus Christ. There’s so much there in that little story. I want to see something new that I haven’t seen before.
It’s is inexhaustible for me to think about how much that means to me and to the world. Birth something new in the new year. We desperately need a better year in 2018 than all the stuff that 2017 has brought.