Do you believe in prayer? Do you take the time to pray? If not, with absolutely no judgmental feelings in mind, I have to say that you are missing out! Praying is a wonderful experience, rewarding and I just think everyone should pray. Although, whether you pray or not is not my aim for this post. Do you know what prayer means exactly? The definition is pretty easy to understand. According to thefreedictionary.com a prayer is basically when a fervent request is made to God, to a god or another object of worship. The second part of the definition says that prayer is ”an act of communion with God, a god, or another object of worship, such as in devotion, confession, praise, or thanksgiving.” Now depending on where you come from (values you’ve been entrusted with , the denomination you grew in, etc.) the person who you address your prayer to will differ. I, for example, pray to God and this is simply related to where I come from, the values my family entrusted me with but mostly because of the experience I’ve had with God through prayer so far.

Praying is not done only when you have something to ask God, praying can also be used for these following purposes:

  • Simply talk to God, just like you would talk to your friend (telling Him how your day was, your concerns, your joys, your pains, etc.)
  • Praising Him with songs and psalms as an act of thankfulness

Now if you are familiar with prayer, whenever you’ve asked something to God, you know that the answer is not always immediate, which is why praying demands a lot of patience. The answer can also be different from what we would’ve wanted to hear or see which is why we need to have guidance from the Holy Spirit. Two main and fundamental key to prayer.

When Jesus was teaching to the people during his time here on earth, he taught many parables about many subjects. There’s this one about prayer which is absolutely relevant to us today, for many reasons, especially by the way he starts telling it:

Then Jesus told his disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.

He said: “In a certain town there was a judge who neither feared God nor cared what people thought. And there was a widow in that town who kept coming to him with the plea, ‘Grant me justice against my adversary.’“For some time he refused. But finally he said to himself, ‘Even though I don’t fear God or care what people think, yet because this widow keeps bothering me, I will see that she gets justice, so that she won’t eventually come and attack me!’”And the Lord said, “Listen to what the unjust judge says. And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night? Will he keep putting them off? I tell you, he will see that they get justice, and quickly. However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?”  Luke 18:1-8

If you have the habit to pray, asking God for something, you know that the answer is often time not immediate. It’s not like asking something to your friend, expecting an answer in the next second. No. God works in his timing and not ours. God proposes us what he’d think would be the best for us and not what we think is the best for us. When you ask something to God, he might not answer you the minute you finish talking to him and the answer he gives might not be what you expect.  Therefore, it takes patience and guidance found in the Bible, if we truly want to know what God has to tell us. Notice how Jesus started telling the story, “…they should always pray and never give up”. There must be a reason why he said that : IT CAN TAKE TIME! Not because God wants you to suffer, but God works in ways where He not only wants us to hear what He has to say, but he also wants to change us.

He can have you climb mountains, face disappointments, get hurt by people you know, face rejection just to give you that answer. But in the end, when you look at it, you’ll be wiser and understand that it was all for your good.You may have to go through a lot to understand that what you’re asking for is probably not the best for you, and this might be your answer from God. Thus, God not only gave you an answer, but he also moulded you into a stronger person. It can take one day, one week, one month, one year and even more, but he will never leave you answer-less. Sometimes we get an answer that we might not have expected and we then go and say God does not hear or pay attention to what we have to say… we should not have that attitude. Instead, acknowledge that what God wants for you is always the best.

The parable explains that the man didn’t care about nobody and wasn’t at all godly. On the other side the lady kept granting him justice. Although at first he didn’t want to give it to her, one day, he did.

Question is if a man who does not care about God nor about people and is able to grant justice, will God not do the same for us and even more? He who care about his people, his children? By this parable we can see that he is the God of the impossible (out of the impossible comes the possible), that what we ask for can take time before being answered and that we ought to be patient and persevere in prayer.

If you want to start something, whatever it may be (something you’d like to accomplish), do not start it without God. In order to avoid many disappointments in the long-run, you need guidance from him that will help you know if you’re doing the right thing. If you need something, pray to God, not a god or “another object of worship”. Pray to a living God, he will sure hear and answer you in the nick of time!


Choose the kings!

March 12, 2012

”Do you see a man skilled in his work? He will serve before kings; he will not serve before obscure men” Proverbs 22:29

This verse couldn’t have been more relevant as I remember encountering quite a few people constantly dictating what they would like to see accomplished in their lives.  Or others, simply unable to find a way to succeed in whatever they would engage themselves into. When this become frequent, you start asking yourself some questions. For instance, why does it seem so hard for him to get what he wants, especially when it seems like he’s doing everything he can. Oh so many reasons can justify this, but if we look it up according to this verse above, sometimes, it requires that we need to learn from the manners of a king!

What does it mean exactly to serve before kings/obscure men? If you’re not too familiar with the Bible, this verse can have several meanings (meaning as to how we can apply it in different areas of life such as the work field, school, family labours, etc.) and does not exclusively targets the precaution we need to have when choosing the people we befriend with. This verse is found in the Old Testament which is put in a context of kings having servants at their commands. In that time, you could learn many lessons and develop a wise thinking and attitude by actually being ”labelled” as a servant who’d work for supremacy. And that learning would only bear fruits if  only that same supremacy was wise itself;  so their servants could  be likewise.  Yes, slaves could learn from their masters. It all depended of the nature of the master himself and the level of qualities of duties given to the servant. The work and tasks given were not to be seen as a burden, if wanted to take lesson from, but as an opportunity to take example from their ways of doing, their manners. Have you not heard that the more time you spend with someone, the more you are to think alike, do alike, speak alike and whatnot? Well, it is true to some extent.

Simply put, you have a better chance at moving forward in your life and you’re more likely to be ”…skilled in [your] work” if you choose the people you hang out’ with and take lessons from accordingly. I do not need to go as far and as deep into the study of social psychology or behavioural science to prove you that your ultimate entourage have a direct effect on your personality and on the way you think. Personal experience itself is enough to show it. I also believe that this is nothing new to you as I’m sure a lot of you have heard the famous adage that says, ”Tell me who your friends are, and I’ll tell you who you are […what you’ve become, what you do in life, etc]”, which can also be applied to the topic. On the same note, whether you are serving before kings or before obscure men can be a great indicator as to why you’re where you are now. Some people do not see the danger in choosing their friends randomly, with no analysis done. Or choosing who they work for without not even a little background check. In fact, making a wiseful choice of the people who you decide to be in your life, as a friend, a confident, a soul mate, etc., can make you benefit from many opportunities where you can learn from and in same, guard you from many useless disappointments.

Servants and kings can still be found in the world today, but a little bit less significantly than before. Thus, if we would have to apply this verse in our modern lives today, serving before kings would inclusively mean choosing with a careful manner  the people that are likely to have an influence on us. Serving before kings could mean that you are choosing the most ”skilled friends” to be in your life, that you’re working for the wisest and most diligent business company in town.  You’ll note that one does not grow only from taking examples from joyful experiences. Sometimes, falling is necessary. Lessons can be taught from mistakes of others which can warn us not to do the same by seeing the consequences endured. Although, it is better to keep company with those who can have a positive effect on us as opposed to ones that can bring us negativity. Whenever you feel like giving up at something, the positive vibe surrounding you and the wise counsels from your ”kings” can be just enough to give you that one more step into accomplishing what you wish to!