Friday, October 31, 2008

Prayer Worrier or Prayer Warrior ?

Yes.. you read the title right ! I think there really are prayer worriers and prayer warriors. Which one are you ??

I think ‘worry’ is the emotion that sits right next to our ‘concern’ button. We all appreciate people who are quickly concerned and eager to come along side someone who is suffering or in pain or going through a difficult time.
I don’t think it is possible to be a person with a caring heart and not be tempted to worry !

So how does worrying relate to prayer ?

What drives you to your knees quicker than worry ? Worry is an alarm clock meant to alert us that it is time to pray ! Many of us hear the alarm clock quick enough but we never turn it off… we try to pray over the aggravating sound of it !!

The Prayer Worrier

What does our prayer look like when we pray without turning off the alarm clock?
We pray the begging prayers, the pleading prayers, the prayers that never bring us more than a moment of peace -- the prayers that lack faith !

I had a friend named Carrie who was a great prayer worrier !
She had a heart for the suffering of others and she wanted everyone’s life to be happy – including her own ! She wore her ‘worry’ emotion on her sleeve where it was always ready for a quick response. While it would drive her to pray , five minutes later she was worrying the problem in her own strength, trying to find an answer, trying to think of how she could manipulate circumstances, people, and yes.. even God … to the end solution she was sure was the right one! I told her once that she needed to give her prayer concern to God then get a tall ladder and put that concern on a very high shelf and put the ladder away. It became a joke between us – this ladder that was so often put back up so she could reach that top shelf and take her concern down again !

I know that there are times when our burden is heavy and a quick prayer isn’t enough. I’m not talking about those times … but it is the ‘worrying’ kind of situations that we are often most reluctant to trust God to take care of.

The Prayer Warrior

In contrast, a prayer warrior prays with faith - the kind of prayer that comes out of knowing God’s heart and Word and is full of trust that He will hear and answer... His way , in His time. A prayer warrior knows the tactics of the enemy and is not taken in by them. A prayer warrior goes with confidence into the Holy of Holies to bring his request before God.

Heb 4:16 “Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

When I think of a prayer warrior, I often think of the ‘example’ of my granddaughter.
She was a precocious child , talking in sentences when she was 18 months old. Somehow- perhaps by over hearing her Mom who asked me to do her mending - she got the idea that I could fix anything. So when ever something was wrong… a hole in her pyjamas, a broken doll or toy, a torn blanket ….her immediate response was, “Nanna fix it!” and she would drag it to the front door to be ready for me the next time I came over!
I, of course, did all I could not to disappoint her faith in me !!!

I have often thought… God must feel the same way. He looks down at His children who are prayer worriers, those who never shut the alarm clock off… and wish they would just realize how powerful and willing He is to answer their prayers!
I think how His heart must swell , as mine did, with pride at a child that trusts Him so completely!
And He too is careful not to disappoint His prayer warrior’s trust that their prayers will be heard !!
1Pe 1:7 “That the genuineness of your faith, being much more precious than gold that perishes, though it is tested by fire, may be found to praise, honor, and glory at the revelation of Jesus Christ”

How often we think a prayer warrior is one who knows how to storm the gates of heaven! I think a prayer warrior is one whose heart is big in childlike trust ! One who hears the alarm clock at the first stroke of worry , and quickly reaches over to turn it off, and immediately seeks the God that has all the answers!

A prayer warrior makes sure his "whole armor" is in place, and then "praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit" is assured that he will "be strong in the Lord" who always has the victory over every battle !
(Eph .4:10-18)


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8 comments:

Lovella said...

Oh Julie, such a precious example of your granddaughter. . and I can just imagine your heart to fix her little problems. . .and yet, as our children get older. . it is hard for me at least not to be the "fix it fox". . and allow God to do the work.
This post made me think of yesterday. . I was looking out the kitchen window and noticed that there was a fish that had jumped up above the netting that Terry uses to keep the leaves out of the pond. It flapped and tried to get underneath the leaves and netting. I told Terry and he went outside to rescue the fish. . I knew that Terry could help the fish. . but the fish didn't. The fish squirmed but Terry who was much smarter and much more determined, caught the slippery little guy and tucked it back under the netting. I watched with amusement, thinking. . .why can't these fish just trust us. . after all, we feed them without ever harming them. The end of the story. . Terry got stung by a bee that was also caught between the leaves. . (I'm sure you can somehow.. .make that part of the story work with today's lesson). .

Having said ALL that. . I so want to be a warrior. . and not a worrier.

Lovella said...

That looks as long as I thought it might look. . .

Julie said...

Ohh...Lovella, thank you for your comment ! How fitting your example of the fish... and yes! Terry got 'stung' rescuing the fish ... but did Jesus not get 'stung' too when He died to rescue us??
(I like long comments, smile!)

The Faithful Remnant said...

Well My prayer warrior, I have one for you. Next Tuesday in California we will be voting on Prop 8- upholding God's definition for marriage between one man and one woman. California could use your prayers and any other people that love marriage for what it is and what our God established it to be.

Please pray for an overwhelming majority of Yes on 8 votes. This would be a huge relief to the worry that is over me for this vote. I so want people to uphold the things of God, not to abhor them.

God bless you prayer warrior!!

charlotte said...

julie
i am so glad that you posted on my typo. you did a much better job than i could of.
i truly want to be a prayer warrior and not a worrier. i am tons better than i used to be but i sometimes put the snooze button on with my drug of choice...food.
now that has gotten better as well, but after a stressful week like this on, with an ill and aging parent, a very dear friend dying, having guests from b.c. for the funeral and ........etc etc.
i should have eaten less and prayed more.....hence my post.
and the posting with the men...well a very good pastor friend of ours didn't trust himself enough and betrayed his wife......she of course trusted him completely...what a crying horrific reality....over twenty years of marriage and several close friends ended their marriage this year.....
anyway i don't want to compete with lovella's lenghtly post...:-)
thankyou for your words of wisdom, they are truly annointed words.

Judy said...

Great thoughts, Julie! Sometimes there is no line between the worrying and the praying. From here on I will think of your illustration and try to turn off the alarm of worry...and pray with confidence.

Thoughts on Life and Millinery. said...

One of my pet peeves is people who collect worries. A prayer concern is mentioned, and for months afterwards (when God has already resolved the issue) the person keeps bringing it up with a face twisted in concern. They seem rather disappointed that the problem is solved actually....

One of my friends kept a prayer journal, and made a point to be thankful for an answer to prayer for the same amount of time that she spent praying about the problem. Seemed like a good idea to me!

Sara said...

Hello dear Julie! Thank you for these words of wisdom....you have a gift for this an I'm so glad you have dedicated your blog to honoring God in this way. I can't tell you the years I spent worrying instead of warrioring! What a relief it finally was when I understood what my role was supposed to be and learned to trust God. Amen!