Walking through the brokenness of life is a tough experience we all share. There are temptations, unfulfilled desires, unjust circumstances, and trials around every corner.
As followers of Jesus, these circumstances rightly become the subject of our prayers.
But what is our mindset when we pray about these things?
Often the response we choose is “God take this situation away” or “God make everything better” or “God make this person more what I need them to be.”
This results in frustration or anger at God when things stay as they were.
Yet, as part of being a follower, Jesus instructed that his disciples are to “deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.” (Matt. 16:24)
There are burdens to our brokenness that we are going to have to carry as we follow Jesus. But, they will feel light because he promised to carry them with us.
So what if this realization changed the mindset of our prayers?
Instead of asking for everything negative thing and challenge to be wiped away, what if instead we asked Jesus “will you walk with me as I experience this?”
Instead of trying to escape the pain, extending our hand and asking the One who overcame the world to be present with us in it.
In this world, God’s goal for each of us may not be to make the pain go away or for us to achieve our potential.
Even as you draw near to Christ, your marriage may still be “unfulfilling”. This is the cross you must take up.
Regardless of how obedient you are, your church attendance still remains low. This is the burden you must carry.
Others may heckle and reject your beliefs, using names to try to shame you. This is part of the cost of discipleship.
Sometimes when we pray for things to go away or for a situation to change, it is a subtle way for the false self to want to be satisfied. Carrying our cross is a reminder of the deceitfulness of the world.
As you are praying today, what is it you are trying to escape? How is God trying to use this to conform you to the image of his Son?
Have you instead invited Jesus to experience this with you?
I am an author, discipleship coach, and speaker who helps followers of Jesus gain perspective on their identities so they can experience transformation in their decisions, behaviors and relationships and live in freedom. My book Tree of Lies: Transforming Decisions, Behaviors, and Relationships By Gaining Perspective On Your Identity in Christ available on Amazon (http://amzn.to/2bjMRyx) or Barnes and Noble (http://bit.ly/2c0q62I). Visit TreeofLies.com for free resources.
Services I offer are one-on-one coaching, group coaching, speaking at organizations/churches, workshops on marriage/discipleship/leadership, and church retreats. For more info, click here to contact me.