Prayer: Your steering wheel or spare tire?

Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. Jeremiah 29:12

Have you ever felt that God wasn’t hearing your prayers? Have you ever just felt far from God for no apparent reason?

The verse in Jeremiah tells us that God does hear us, and he is near (even when it doesn’t feel like it) But to get a better understanding of what he means when he says “then” we need look at little deeper to get the full picture.

This is what the Lord says: “When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will come to you and fulfill my good promise to bring you back to this place. For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.  Jeremiah 29:10-13

We notice that God tells us specifically of his promises (to prosper us and not to harm us) and the very next verse we are promised that when we call on him and pray to him we will listen to us.

Whenever someone listens (and not just hears) what I have to say it means alot to me. How does it make you feel when someone listens to you? When is the last time someone just listened to you?

Yeah that’s what I thought, usually when we go to people in hopes that they will just listen, we are met with unsolicited advice and several possible solutions thrown at us instead of just a listening ear.

Why do we keep going to other people to listen when it goes against their human nature, when we can go to God who infallibly listens to us?

We set ourselves up for failure when we look to man to fill a void that only God can.

Now think of who you know that is more likely to listen to you (and you are more likely to listen to them) Usually they have two traits in common:

  • We care we have a higher level of compassion and empathy.
  • We have a intimate relationship with the person.

Relate this to our heavenly father, He listens because he cares and because we have an intimate relationship with him. Here’s the deal though because He listens to us, He wants us to listen to Him. He longs to be our first thought instead of our last resort.

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“Is prayer your steering wheel or your spare tire?” – Corrie ten Boom

Focus Challenge:

Before going to your spouse, your family member, or your friend GO TO PRAYER. God is there to listen to us, and unlike well-meaning family or friends, He won’t give crummy advice. I know it’s tempting to call up someone to get their advice or run a scenario or story by them, but I encourage you to instead turn to God. Don’t underestimate the power and peace of knowing that not only does God listen to us, but he understands us.

 

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