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Just pray

Posted by onyx 
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Just pray
June 18, 2010 08:45PM
This morning I had a vivid dream, that came with a message for me, and maybe for you too?

The situation was one of a typically religious group setting where a group of men had gathered, and one who had needs was to be the subject (victim?) of prayer. The man who was leading the group used this opportunity...started praying for the man, and then leading into "praying" for other things that were partially irrelevant, but which pushed his particular pet doctrines in order to manipulate the others present (in this case it was his view that alcohol should not be imbibed by Christians). "How typical," I thought, "how sad!" Then I distinctly heard Papa's voice in the words, "Just pray for him, don't dig theological rabbit warrens."

And so I have been dwelling upon what all this means this morning.

Do I have the focus of love towards others when I pray for them? Or do I try to manipulate them?

Do I "dig theological rabbit warrens" - create a theology and doctrine by digging holes in the earth...holes that can easily collapse...holes and tunnels that go off in all directions, that are by definition mine, yet I want others to live in them too?

I am sure that more can be said...but I've got to go for a drive with the family again grinning smiley

Every day people are straying away from the church and going back to God.
- Lenny Bruce
Re: Just pray
June 20, 2010 12:48AM
So many times when people pray, they are manipulating the person to do or be just what they think is best. The best prayer to pray is for Papa to come into the situation unhindered and work His perfect will, showering the person with His irresistible love and grace. Let the rabbits dig their own holes. Papa's desire is for us to live above the dirt of the earth, not under it. I have been stuck underground for so long and am feeling more and more ready to bust loose. I don't want people praying into me what I "should" be or do...I want them loosing the love of God on me. Theology, schmeology! I just want the Person of Christ. He is not bound with theology so why should we be?

W.I.P. (Work in Progress)
Learning to Live LOVED
Re: Just pray
June 20, 2010 02:13AM
Gosh, this is an interesting conversation. I think that what has changed most in my life in the last couple of years has been prayer. I used to be known, not only locally, but internationally as a prayer "warrior". People still see me out in town and want to give me their "prayer requests". But I have changed oh so much. I think that it began with a prayer when I was at the end of my rope (again....). I finally came to the understanding that I had been living my life by certain expectations, that were NOT based on reality. So I was asking Father to show me reality. I just wanted to see what was reality...

And as this has progressed, I can hardly believe, when I look back, at how I used to pray. The formulas, the misconceptions about God, the manipulations, GAH!!!! No longer is the world on my shoulders. Now I am learning that He is there, with each of us, and He really loves us, and is able to walk us through our issues, and that they all have something good to come from them. Not especially according to our old ways of thinking of "blessings" but just as we travel the on this journey.

Prayer isn't usually (anymore) a bowing of my head, folding my hands and me giving Him a list.... Now it's just a sort of continuous, unforced conversation. Kind of a "wonder what this is all about" but only wondering, not having to have the full set of plans stamped and approved. But that wonder is ok because of the One I know and love, and know loves me.

So.... just a few thoughts there.... one of my favorite things about life now. A trust, finally, after all these years that I don't have to have it all together.... because He does. And no longer do I have to rush to rescue others from their issues, but a trust that He already has.... I look to see when to speak, or not.... what to do.... but there is this great trust that He is indeed there with them, and He does indeed have a great love for them.... and won't let go. I might not get the title of "prayer warrior" anymore.... but that's just fine.


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/20/2010 02:16AM by Heather.
Re: Just pray
June 20, 2010 02:23AM
I can relate to that prayer warrior thing. That used to be my reputation too, and I have to confess that I have times of feeling like a failure now that I cant do that anymore. BUt I am just (temporarily I hope) in that "in-between" misty place between who I was and who I will be in Christ.

W.I.P. (Work in Progress)
Learning to Live LOVED
Re: Just pray
June 20, 2010 07:33AM
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Fab feebs
Theology, schmeology! I just want the Person of Christ. He is not bound with theology so why should we be?
*Onyx nods* zigactly!

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Honest Heather
And as this has progressed, I can hardly believe, when I look back, at how I used to pray. The formulas, the misconceptions about God, the manipulations, GAH!!!! No longer is the world on my shoulders. Now I am learning that He is there, with each of us, and He really loves us, and is able to walk us through our issues, and that they all have something good to come from them. Not especially according to our old ways of thinking of "blessings" but just as we travel the on this journey.
2 right. How many times I went to classes to "learn how to pray" when I should have been learning that formulas are a method to manipulate God, when what is really needed is realationship.

Every day people are straying away from the church and going back to God.
- Lenny Bruce
Re: Just pray
June 20, 2010 03:24PM
Something that helped me get a picture of what prayer really is, was a scene in The Shack, where Mac comes into the kitchen and sees Papa, Jesus and Sarayu sitting around the table talking and laughing.

Now I see myself walking into the kitchen, where They are already talking about the person or subject I want to bring up, and I just join in the conversation. I used to think that "praying for someone" meant I had to get God's attention and focus it toward that person, as if He was looking elsewhere and I had to remind him. Now I know he's loving each of us all the time, so I just sorta say "Heather" or "Phoebe" or "Onyx" to him and he nods and smiles, kindof "Yes, we were just talking about her/him, what would you like to add?"

Do you guys think this is goofy or unscriptural? Blushing
Re: Just pray
June 21, 2010 03:35AM
Totally goofy and unscriptural...I Luv it!

Every day people are straying away from the church and going back to God.
- Lenny Bruce
Re: Just pray
June 23, 2010 11:22AM
Thanks for reminding me of that picture C Shell - I like it a lot.


Like this too Heather:

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Prayer ...it's just a sort of continuous, unforced conversation. Kind of a "wonder what this is all about" but only wondering



So what do you guys think is happening when you are awoken from a sleep with someone on your mind, or when a person comes to your attention during the day totally from left-field (ie out of context/ unrelated to what you are doing) - usually people that you don't associate with regularly. What is one to do? What is prayer then?
Re: Just pray
June 23, 2010 03:24PM
I almost always think those times are from God. Because there's no other reason I can come up with, why I thought of that person. So maybe he just wants me to think of that person with him for a moment. or to say, like Heather's definition above, "Yes, Papa, what about old Fred? I wonder why you brought him to mind just now", and ask him to be with Fred.

It is quite mysterious, why that happens. I've heard lots of stories about "at that very moment when I thought of Fred, his life was hanging in the balance" or something like that. I don't think it's always so dramatic, but I believe those stories are probably true.

Just my opinion, I could be wrong.
Re: Just pray
June 24, 2010 01:32PM
Just look at how that thought ties in with Mark's blog about how Colin was led by God to pray and search for him for five years and then disciple him in such a loving way. Sometimes prayer is "going uptown" walking with Jesus until the exact right moment arrives for two people to meet and interact. Wow.

W.I.P. (Work in Progress)
Learning to Live LOVED
Re: Just pray
August 06, 2010 10:33AM
Yeh I like that as well, the interracting!
I really love the opportunities I have with others and how "stuff just happens" they ask something of me and we just chat about it, its not a religious thing but a God inspired moment, well at least it must be after all what kind of life do I have if i'm not "inspired"??

LH
Re: Just pray
August 06, 2010 04:31PM
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Wifey
So what do you guys think is happening when you are awoken from a sleep with someone on your mind, or when a person comes to your attention during the day totally from left-field (ie out of context/ unrelated to what you are doing) - usually people that you don't associate with regularly. What is one to do? What is prayer then?

When I was a teen, I had a friend in my homeschool group who was really boy crazy. Truth be told, she reminded me of myself when I was just a bit younger and it worried me to think that she might end up being hurt in some of the same ways I was. She came to my mind often and my first reaction was to gossip about her, "Did you see the way she was hanging off of that guy?" Eventually, though it struck me that God wasn't putting her in my thoughts so I could gossip about her, but so that I could pray for her. God knew my experiences, how well I could identify with the insecurity behind her boy chasing, and how familiar I was with the consequences of those actions. If there was anybody who knew what to pray for her, it had to be me.

Well, I graduated highschool and didn't see her again for probably three years but I'd continued to pray for her often. Eventually, her mother would tell me that she'd been engaged to a guy who seemed very wrong for her but that she had broken it off just in the nick of time. She's married to a nice guy now who really seems to respect her and they have a pudgy little baby boy.

I don't believe my prayers necessarily changed the outcome of the situation. In retrospect, it seems to me that God just wanted someone to converse with. Perhaps it grieved Him to see her making poor decisions and God just wanted someone to voice His concerns to? I mean, what if prayer is just as much for God as for us? Wouldn't it make sense that a God who manifests Himself in relationships would also thrive on communication?

I guess my suggestion is, whenever someone pops up in your mind and it occurs to you to pray for them, consider ways in which you might have a bit more insight into their situation than others would and talk to God about that.
Re: Just pray
August 07, 2010 06:35AM
Funny that - someone just 'poped' out of the woodwork this afternoon. He said he "wanted to see me about something" and that usually means "good intentions" or there selling something! After about an 1hour or so talking about his life and how "Dad" was opening his eyes to things outside the box of "church" (just couldn't help smiling so much by this stage) that I was really wondering where I fitted in big time! Then he said it - 'I want to know what you've found' ...
So after about 2 hours we had shared both our journeys that seem to cover the last 12months, various books we have read incl 'The Shack' (I laughed and cried all the way through it - soppy LH).
We talked about relationship with Dad that was growing and living and - just different than the 'structure of the church as it is now'. About things seen and unseen, known and still unknown, planning what God wants him to do and then just touching on peace in him.

Was I floored - yep i really was starting to think the church had sent the 'big guns' in as Onyx would say winking smiley when in fact Father wanted me to know i'm changing you and even when you cant see the changes in yourself, others can.

LH
Re: Just pray
August 07, 2010 12:18PM
Very Very Very COOL! Thanks Papa for such a nice encounter. So happy for you LH Squish

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Shell
So maybe he just wants me to think of that person with him for a moment.

LOVE THAT!!

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mountainash
In retrospect, it seems to me that God just wanted someone to converse with.

Isn't that Suh-WEET!! I've felt that before, and it made me feel more in love with Papa. Not like he was dependent on me, but sharing and relating and being WITH eachother. Luv
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