Sunday, May 21, 2006

Paradigm Shift....

So I am running around doing my normal schedule at work which equates to ever changing plans, staying awake for extended periods of time doing various tasks, and learning how to survive with high levels of stress on a daily basis as well as facing the oh so fun lessons of responsibility and accountability...... Learning how to deal with the frustrations of
"being flexible" .... working with difficult personalities that clash with my own.... all the while fighting the prevailing sentiments of cynicism and pessimisms surrounding my work place.... generally having very little "personal" time to myself for reflection, prayer, playing guitar.... shoot... evening eating and sleeping!!!!! All of this I have come to fondly call the "GRIND"....

At this point in time I will cease boring you with the endless laundry list of details, gripes, and challenges that I face every day. Just know that they are the context from which I am writing all of this.....

So I slam on the brakes this morning for a few minutes to blog about a startling revelation from today's reading in His Utmost For His Highest..... My goal here is to attempt to hash out what I think God is trying to tell me about thru this writing....

The buzz phrase that really thru me for a loop this morning is this:
"The purpose of God is not to answer our prayers, but by our prayers we come to discern the mind of God"....

This is truly a mind shift that might seem at a glance easy... obvious... and a given... but I think it is radical, revolutionary, and exetremely difficult to maintain on a consistent basis.... I've been saying prayers for about as long as I can remember.... Being a prayer warrior in the realm of the intercessory so to speak isn't exactly my strongest forte, but I make a point to at least try to pray regularly....

But to sit down and to really ask myself... Why? What is the purpose of my prayer??? What do I really want out of it??? What am I shooting for??? Am I shooting to get a need met??? Am I lifting up a need for another person??? Am I genuinely praising and thanking God for who He is and what He is about??? I guess the punch line here is I really must examine my motives or I must ask God to.... in order for me to truly come to a place where I genuinely wish to discern the mind of God... If I am brutally honest with myself... I do believe that a good portion of my prayer life has more to do with my own will.. and not necessarily the will of my Father... Thus, my constant reaction to many situations is to complain... or to be frustrated to the point of doing something negative... or just being plain depressed, because I feel like God doesn't care or isn't listening to me...

The kicker is to me on that note is that I am sure that He listens all my " I want... I wish... When will this happen... " etc.etc. He just doesn't really care about my will so much... His mission and goal I think can be found in John 17... Where Jesus was praying to the Father about being one as they were one......... God wants to be so intimate with me that I will be "one" with Him... The point of my prayers is that I learn what He wants... So I can ask Him about all the things He is trying to do... His Kingdom purposes... and in turn this is the actual reason that I was created... aka my TRUE purpose in life.... in other words.... I WAS BORN FOR THIS!!!!!!!!!!!! In the most literal sense...

It's soooo hard for me to wrap my mind around this... God set me in my life with my family... my friends.. even the people I don't like...my geographic location... My current occupation... He specifically placed the deepest desires of my heart in me to be fulfilled at HIS appointed time (not mine)... all of the circumstances I find myself in... the challenges.... the difficult changes..

ALLLLL of these things are the backdrop in which He has chosen to reveal His Person to me... Because as a result of all of these things my reactions will lead me to prayer.... which will either take me into a deeper more understanding relationship wtih Him..... or... I will shy away from Him and be less like the person He created me to be...

So I guess the important thing about prayer is not only the content... but the motive behind the content... If my motive is to Seek His Kingdom first and come into a more intimate knowledge of Him... then God's purpose would be accomplished IN me.... My character will be confirmed to His will... otherwise... I will be just spinning my wheels in the mud or getting dragged down into the muck and mire of despair and depression....

Hope you were able to coherently follow my rambling madness this morning.. I don't know if all that makes perfect sense... but I do think I am on to something big??? What do you think??? Comments from the peanut gallery are much appreciated....
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