A Time to Stop Praying

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How often do you pray and feel like you don’t get an answer? Ever feel like your prayers hit the ceiling and stop there?

There are many reasons for this feeling, and I don’t want to explore all of them right now, but there is one thing I would like for you to consider: maybe it’s time to stop praying and start acting.

I wonder how often we pray about difficult situations, sometimes our own, and God just shakes his head, knowing we are fully capable of answering our own pleas.

We can’t pray for a new job and not make any applications. It doesn’t make a lot of sense to pray for healing without going to the doctor and following his/her advice. You can’t be magically freed from an addiction without doing the necessary steps to free yourself from it. If you pray to be relieved from a sin you struggle with, and yet don’t make yourself accountable to someone, you are likely to not be successful.

I am guilty as charged. I have begged God to remove things from my life without taking the hard, obvious steps to improve my own situation.

Granted, many things are beyond our control, and I believe God can at the very least help us cope, even if he cannot remove the situation. But, I think too often we cry out to God and the lack of an answer is because we already have one, we just don’t want to do the next difficult thing.

One of the prayers we have prayed with our boys is: “Give me the wisdom to know what to do, and the courage to do it.” That is a prayer that never goes out of style.

There is a song by Matthew West called “Do Something.” The beginning lyrics say this:

I woke up this morning
Saw a world full of trouble now
Thought, how’d we ever get so far down
How’s it ever gonna turn around
So I turned my eyes to Heaven
I thought, “God, why don’t You do something?”
Well, I just couldn’t bear the thought of
People living in poverty
Children sold into slavery
The thought disgusted me
So, I shook my fist at Heaven
Said, “God, why don’t You do something?”
He said, “I did, I created you”

So, regardless if the problem is your own, or it belongs to another, ask yourself, “What can I do?” How has God gifted you to be a part of the solution? Who can you get to help you? What are the steps you have been avoiding taking? Sometimes resolution doesn’t come without a cost.

Maybe, just maybe, it’s time to do something.

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