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Categories: Prayer

As I Was Praying

LAST WEEK, GOD OPENED A new window on what He and I can do together. I was in the middle of preparing for a class I’m teaching at church when God reminded me that He is life. As in, “I have come that they may have life” (Jn. 10:10) and “the God who gives life to the dead and calls things that are not as though they were” (Ro. 4:17).
Then He invited me to join Him in the business of bringing life. “In any situation where there is ‘death’,” He said, “You get to pray and ask me to bring life.”
Whoa. That’s a prayer focus that had never occurred to me. I’ve gotten so used to living with realities such as “Too good to be true” and “Going from bad to worse” that it doesn’t occur to me to notice where elements of death are at work in a situation—they’re like background noise.
But God’s invitation has nudged me to look at situations from a death-and-life viewpoint. Sometimes it’s obvious where life is needed, as when a friend is grappling with cancer. In other situations, I’ve had to look a little harder. I’ve sat in meetings and conversations wondering, “Is there an element of ‘death’ in what we’re talking about—maybe through an attitude, an emotion, a way of thinking, or a practice?” And I’ve sent up little prayers, “Father, would you bring life here?” or “What would you like to do here that would bring life?”
Looking around and realizing, “I get to ask God to bring life,” has been fun—mostly. You see, this prayer has had an unexpected consequence: It’s revealed I’m not always eager for God to answer it. How can that be?! I’ve tasted life and know how wonderful it is; why wouldn’t I want that touch on everything around me?
Truth is, I don’t. In one situation, I’ve gotten used to the dynamics; I can navigate them just fine. If that situation were brimming with life, I’d have to grapple with the change. In another situation, I’ve been chagrined to find myself thinking, Why bring life and let them off the hook? They made their bed; they can lie in it.
Oh me of small heart and small faith.
And, apparently, even smaller vision for what God might want to do.
And even smaller reverence for His sovereignty! All He’s invited me to do is ask for His life. I don’t remember Him asking me to determine when and how He should bring it.
So I ask for forgiveness for my small heart, and continue praying my new prayer, that the King of Life will bring His “Midas” touch to those around me.

God bless you all.

Brian Gosur

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