Friday, February 26, 2016

Journeys are meant to change you

I reflect on my prayer journey today in light of having read What is Prayer Suppose to Accomplish. It identifies and reviews the current and past corporate Christian view of prayer.

I grew up having a regular devotional life, but struggled with my prayer journey. Prayer was methodical. I had been taught to pray a certain way, and I struggled with how disconnected my prayers were. Around my early 30s these two switched. I learned how to pray, learned what prayer meant, and saw enough evidence in my own life that I could not walk away from prayer, even if I could try.

I had experienced an exceptionally profound prayer moment that took a year and a half to happen. That prayer was more than an answer to a question I had been asking of God, but it was also a major revelation as to my communication lines to Him. After that time, I've had smaller but just as profound prayer moments; moments rooted in the reality of my life, prayer that was practical. Often it was and is a mashup of purposeful prayer and sometimes a heart's cry for help. 

A few things I learned about prayer are: it is a line of communication, it is intimate, and it involves a Higher Someone. Prayer isn't just based on my own voice and thoughts, but prayer is also based on His Voice and His Thoughts. I think people struggle with prayer in the Christian world because they aren't shown the voice of God through the Word. I learned the importance of finding God/Jesus' voice in scripture and allow these Thoughts to guide and direct my prayer time.
Sometimes the prayer was in the form of journaling, or in the form of a out-loud conversation, but the prayer made me stop and reflect on Someone else other than myself. As I look at mainstream society, I also recognize that prayer is a form of meditation. It causes an individual to be meta-cognitive of their thought processes. Prayer is a way of stepping out of one's own thought process' and reflecting inward and outward. Having a purpose to that reflection (in my case, God/Jesus), makes prayer not only meditative, but also relational.

I struggled with praying, but I knew there was more to it than what I was experience, and I constantly sought a better way of understanding prayer. Much of this seeking comes from Luke 11:9 - So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. One thing I know of in this walk with Christ, if there is constant seeking and a willingness to see where He leads, answers will be had, but mostly it's about the journey.

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