Wednesday, May 18, 2011
2 Samuel 7:18 - 25 "Then King David went in and sat before the Lord, and he said: "Who am I, O Sovereign Lord, and what is my family that You have brought us this far?....Is this Your usual way of dealing with man, O Sovereign Lord?....How great You are, O Sovereign Lord! There is no one like You, and there is no God but You, as we have heard with out own ears...Do as You promised, SO THAT YOUR NAME WILL BE GREAT FOREVER."
God has really been dealing with me over the matter of prayer. Sometimes, I do not feel that I am a very good pray-er. I have the desire - I just feel so....inadequate. I make beautiful lists, I can journal, and then I feel like I have just brought God a shopping list and asked Him to give me everything I think I want or need - thank you very much. Oh, and by the way, please bless me and mine in the process.
As I have been reading through the Bible lately, I have tried to pay particular attention to the prayers offered by some of the people in the scripture...or lack, thereof. A couple of days ago, I talked about getting ahead of God and how David made plans to build the temple without asking God what to do. God has just told David that his good plans aren't good enough, but that God has a better plan. After God reveals his plan to David, his reaction is very interesting to me: He went into the tent that contained the Ark of the Covenant and he sat before it.
Herein lies the problem for me. Sitting. Being quiet. "Be still and know that I am God." (Ps. 46:10) Even if I sit and shut my mouth, how do I get my brain to turn off?? But David just sat and marveled at what God had done for him. He acknowledged God's sovereignty. And then, even though, it wasn't David's original plan, he tells God to go ahead and do what He needs to do in order to glorify His Name. As David finishes his prayer in v. 28 he says, "Your words are trustworthy and You have promised good things.."
So many things to learn from one, simple prayer - but I think I need to start with just sitting before God. Being in His presence. Turning off the TV, the computer, the phone. Getting alone with God. Often I hear people say that they just don't sense God's presence. In his book on prayer, Philip Yancey says that "prayer means keeping company with a God who is already present." He is there whether we can feel it or not, we just have to be still long enough to connect. I think that is exactly what David did.
"Lord, Help me learn how to sit quietly in Your presence - to experience You. No shopping lists, no interruptions, just quietly before You. Thank You that Your words are trustworthy and Your promises are good. Glorify Your Name."