Saturday, December 12, 2015

Get on Your Knees, As Ugly as They Are

I’ve been thinking about prayer lately and the different forms in which it manifests itself. It could be because I’ve been having talks with Little Bit about how to pray and it could be the season. It could be because my proverbial cup is (thankfully), blessedly, relatively empty right now when others around me seem to be having theirs overflowing.

It reminds me of something our pastor says from time to time:

“Folks, look around you. Right now, right here, there are three types of people and you all fit into one of these categories. You’ve either just emerged from a storm, you’re heading into a storm, or you’re smack dab in the middle of one right now.”

So true.

I’ve shared the ACTS model of prayer with my girl. It goes something like this:

A - Adoration (acknowledging God as the Creator of the Universe)
C - Confession (confessing our own sinfulness)
T - Thanksgiving (thanking God for His personal benefits to us:  forgiveness, family, material comforts)
S - Supplication (asking for what we need)

I don’t want to brag, but I’m pretty good at that last one. I took John 15:16 and ran with it — “…whatever you ask in my name, the Father will give you.” Oh, the requests He must hear!

Please let it be good news.

I’ll never drink again.

Please don’t let my wife find out.

Please be with our country, our world, our leaders.

I know, through the years, some of mine have been doozies. I once prayed, as a child, for pretty knees. There, I said it. I’m vain AND crazy. The laugh that must have gotten in Heaven. “Hey, Peter, come here. Look at this one that just came in. ‘Pretty knees.’ Ha ha ha ha  Don’t they know that’s an oxymoron? He made those suckers ugly for a reason.”

I’ve sat on the side of a bathtub, just a handful of years apart, praying over this little idol with vastly differing prayers:

I’ve prayed, for the same person, to have healing and then just a peaceful departure.

Those of you who know my resume know I’ve prayed about keeping a job and about finding a new one.

And, as I mentioned earlier, I’ve of late sent up a prayer of thanks for all the ways I’m blessed and for my empty cup. It hasn’t always been empty and I know it will fill up again, but the promise we have is that He will be there with a towel when that happens. 

Now, friends, I beg of you. When you speak to a friend in need, for Goodness sake, please don’t quote me about God’s towel. That will be just as well received and helpful as telling them, “God won’t give you more than you can handle” or “If it doesn’t kill you, it’ll make you stronger.” I don’t want to be mixed up in that business.