I call to You from the ends of the earth when my heart is without strength.
Lead me to a rock that is high above me.
God, You have heard my vows; You have given a heritage to those who fear Your name.
-Psalm 61:2 & 5
We might think that when we are at the end of our rope, at our wit’s end, exhausted, discouraged, or weak; that the prayers we pray are not very effective or valuable. But they are.
We are never instructed to wait till we have it together, to pray.
We are supposed to pray when we are in need, in trouble, empty, bewildered, lonely, or afraid. We can call to God from the lonely place, from the barren place, or from the empty place.
When we feel unstable, we pray for God’s stability.
Then we feel fragmented, we need the rock of God. “Lead me”, means “take me there” because life has taken its toll on me and I am feeling wobbly.
When we pray or walk in worship, we make vows to God. Vows are promises. There is a healthy, loving way to make vows, and an unhealthy way.
At a wedding, the couple makes public vows to each other. In their married life, it is natural and healthy to continue to make vows. We make these promises as an expression of our ongoing and growing love for our spouse.
It is the same way in our relationship with God. It is good and healthy to tell God how committed we are to him. We say it and do it. We fulfill our vows:
Then I will continually sing of Your name, fulfilling my vows day by day.
Vows are an expression of love and commitment that must be attempted to be followed through on. It is foolish to make vows that you are not going to keep. A vow is a promise and when we do not keep or even try to keep a promise, it breaks the relationship.
It is good to promise God, make commitments or vows to God. We just need to be careful what we promise, because lying or blowing hot air in prayer is not good.
We all want answered prayer. What if the main answer to prayer is to know God heard me?
Sit with that thought. God heard your prayers. I have understood that there is a Hebrew idea culled from the OT, that when God hears, he answers. Something to ponder.
God hears and answers, but it may be a very different answer than we expect.
We have to remember that God made man in his image. When we make God robotic or like a machine or even a magnificent person who designed a blueprint or wrote a script that he is bound to carry out, we are making God in our image.
God is a person who cares and listens and wants to know me and my most intimate questions, thoughts and desires or requests.
When I realize or know that he hears, it makes me want to pray more and listen more and be with him more. Spending time with God is never futile. It is always an investment, a healthy choice. There is a blessing for those who call out to God and make promises to him that they intend to keep.
The reward for praying to God, the creator, the Father of Jesus; is God. You get to relate to God and have God relate to you. You get to be filled with God and be connected to God, bearing God’s fruit in your life. You get peace that the world does not have.
The artwork about is by James Michael Smith, found here.
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