God, are You listening?

Sometimes you wonder if He is paying attention. We may feel that way about the condition of the world or perhaps the circumstances of our lives. When we pray, we want to know the channel is open. Maybe we need some help in knowing the proper way to pray?

  • “Hands together, fingers pointed, folded hands, bended-down knees. And don’t open your eyes until they say ‘Amen.’”
  • “If you’re Catholic, you gotta kneel down on boards. If you’re regular, you just keep your eyes shut and don’t lean on the bed.”
  • “You hold hands with anybody in the room and make a big circle, like duck-duck-goose.”

That’s how some of our young friends think you should do it. Ahhh … the etiquette of prayer.

But if God is listening, how long does it take to get an answer to our prayers. We turn to our panel of experts again.

  • “About a minute.”
  • “About six million years.”
  • “Infirmity.”
  • “You really want to know how long it takes? Okay, I’ll tell you. Nobody knows.”

Good. We cleared that up, but why does God make us wait for answers?

  • “You’re not the only one praying, you know!”
  • “It’s not like He’s out on vacation or something. He has a lot to do and no time off. And He’s entitled to a life of His own. He’s not your slave, you know.”
  • “God takes only one day to answer your prayer in the summer, and eight days in the winter. Only He takes forever if you’re asking for a Barbie doll.”

We have made prayer too complicated, too mysterious. George Herbert wrote; “Prayer should be the key of the day and the lock of the night.” It should be as natural as breathing. It is more attitude than action. Paul said we were to pray without ceasing – being constantly aware of the presence of One who loves us more than we could possibly know.

Let’s let prayer achieve its primary goal: “The reality is, my prayers don’t change God.  But, I am convinced prayer changes me.  Praying boldly boots me out of that stale place of religious habit into authentic connection with God Himself.”  Lysa TerKeurst

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About Mark Wilbanks

Dr. Wilbanks became Wieuca’s fifth senior pastor in February of 2012. Mark’s father, Oliver Wilbanks, served as Associate Pastor here from 1966 to 1982. Wieuca had a tremendous influence in shaping Mark’s call to ministry during his teenage and young adult years. A graduate of both Southern and New Orleans Baptist Theological seminaries, Mark has served churches in Kentucky, Florida, and Georgia. He pastored Southside Baptist Church in Jacksonville, Florida for 17 years and Bradfordville First Baptist Church in Tallahassee, Florida for ten years. He and his wife, Kim, were married in 1979 and have two sons, Andy and Jordan. Andy is married to Lindsay and they have a son, Cade, a daughter, Ruthie, and welcomed their third child, Samuel, in October.

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