God, I need You to do this. God, I need You to take care of that need. God, I need You to give me the money for this bill. God, I need You to help me pass this test. God, I need You to give me this. God, I need You to give me that. God, just make me happy. God, give me everything that I want. God, I need a miracle. God, You’re just not working fast enough. God, just make it all go my way.
How many times do we come into our prayer time with God sounding something like this? It’s our laundry list. It’s our marching orders that we’re giving to God. It’s the “give me” mentality. It’s all about us. We go from one sentence to the next without hardly catching our breath, not once giving God a chance to say anything. We speak our minds and then it’s off for the rest of our day. We’ve told God about all of the “important” things in our life, but have failed greatly at the most important part of prayer.
That important part of prayer that we so often leave out isn’t something complex and difficult, but rather it’s something quite simple. So simple that we speed right past it without giving it a second glance. The basic and elementary things often get pushed aside as we think that we have far exceeded them, but in reality we need to go back to Kindergarten in our prayer lives. Going back isn’t a bad thing when we realize that God wants us to come to Him as a little child, so take this gentle rebuke as a positive thing to help challenge and grow you. He wants to see you soar in your pursuit of prayer.
So what exactly is God wanting to show us and help us learn? He wants nothing more than for us to seek His heart and not just His hand. He knows that we each have needs, and He is more than concerned about each of them, but He is more concerned with us connecting with Him. He wants to be so much more than Santa Claus or a magic genie. He wants to be our Lord. When we pursue His heart, it says to Him that we are more interested in a relationship with Him than what He can do for us. The mere joy of His presence is all that we seek and desire. The gifts of His hand aren’t the reason that we seek Him. It’s simply doing life with Him each and everyday that brings meaning and significance into our lives. He is so much more than the gifts.
We must make an intentional effort to guard against this behavior. Our culture teaches that it’s all about us and what we want, but that’s not what Jesus taught. To be drawn closer to this truth, we must make a conscious effort to spend time in His Word. We must also spend time just being still and silent to prepare ourselves for Him. As we pour into these things, then we begin to root out all of the self focus and become more God focused. Then our prayer time truly does become all about Him. We find joy in just being with Him even when no words are spoken.
Seek His heart and not just His hand. Seek The Giver and not just the gifts. Pursue Him passionately with no hidden agenda or manipulation. It’s God that you need and want, not all of the things. Be still and quiet. Listen. Give Him time to talk. Allow Him to share His heart with you. Enjoy these simple moments because these are the ones breathing life into your dry and parched soul. Drink of the water of His presence. Just rest. Rest in the quietness of the moment.
Prayer…it’s so much more than your laundry list. It’s your pipeline into the abundant life. Seek Him. Seek Him now. Wait on Him and be encouraged. He’s speaking at this moment. Do you hear Him?