“I used to pray that God would feed the hungry, or do this or that, but now I pray that he will guide me to do whatever I’m supposed to do, what I can do. I used to pray for answers, but now I’m praying for strength. I used to believe that prayer changes things, but now I know that prayer changes us and we change things.” (Mother Teresa)
Although I think God sometimes intervenes in our lives in remarkable ways, I mostly agree with Mother Teresa. Prayer changes US. Sometimes I wake up in the mornings with a gripe or some kind of useless negativity on my mind. I have to sit with God and get lined up.
Sometimes it takes a while.
Martin Luther once said, “I have so much to do that I shall spend the first three hours in prayer.” I used to think Luther was uber-godly to do something like that, but now I wonder if he was like me. After all…sometimes it takes a while.
My first thought is “I wish so-and-so leader or so-and-so journalist would spend the first three hours of the day in prayer.” But then I get a God nudge to look within first. Ephesians 3:20 says that God’s able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine. That’s pretty compelling. I do believe he’s capable of changing me.
When I pray, that gripe gets realigned. When I don’t pray, it just seems to linger. And about those leaders and journalists? They rely on popular support of their brand. If we take action and say no, there will be change.