Paul Tripp shared a picture of prayer today in my reading that was vivid and clear. He said..
Prayer is not bringing your list and asking God to sign on the bottom. Prayer is handing God a blank sheet that you have already signed and trusting Him to fill it out as he sees fit.
What a profound statement of trust this is.
To allow you to write my story; determine my future; decide the outcome of my daily life.
To write my character, personality.
To decide my successes, failures, and trials.
To permit you access to determine the desires of my heart and write the passions your will sees fit into my being.
To grant you complete and utter control of it all.
Abba, this is trust. Trust I fail to grasp, I fail to embrace on a regular basis.
I don’t trust myself, for my I know my faults.
I often fail to trust you for the exact opposite reason…because you have none and because in your divine will, you will seek to eradicate in me anything that is wrong…and that hurts; it’s not comfortable or enjoyable.
If I am honest, I struggle to trust and hand you my blank, signed sheet, not because I fear what you will do with it but because I fear the pain it will take to get to the epilogue of the book you are writing in my life.
I know the outcome. I even look forward to the end! It’s the journey and the process of getting there that I fear, that I strive against.
I want control. For then I can protect myself from all that I desire to avoid. It is so much easier to treat you like a genie in a lamp whose purpose is to grant my wishes and wants.
And thus the lists. We bring them to you, asking/demanding that you fulfill the list exactly as we have supplied; with no alterations or substitutions.
And we miss the point of prayer. We (I) fail to treat it as an act of worship; an act of surrender; an act of faith in YOU.
So today, Abba, I pray for myself, I pray for your church body that gathers here at Hephzibah and around the world…may we offer to you our blank, signed papers as we humbly bow at your feet.
No demands, no expectations; just a simple trust, a simple faith in YOU to do what you have promised…make us like you and enable us to know greater joy and fellowship with you than we ever thought possible.
Here it is Abba…take it. We trust you. We love you.
I trust you. I love you.