Post by Faith Reboot’s Kelly Switala
Sometimes I don’t feel like praying.
Yep – I just said that. And I know I’m not alone because when I mentioned it in my women’s Bible study group the other day, every single woman nodded her head in understanding agreement.
Sometimes I don’t feel like praying because I’m angry or hurt. Sometimes it’s because I don’t understand my circumstances and other times I’ve flat-out sinned and, in my rebellion, I’m not ready to confess and repent. No matter the reason, my heart is not right with God and He seems distant to me. I let my emotions and my sin build a wall between myself and God, blocking His presence and creating a disconnect in our relationship. It’s not long before I begin to feel like I don’t know how to start again and I just can’t seem to find the words to pray.
But I know that, in spite of my feelings, praying is exactly what I need to do. God wants me to pray to Him regardless of how I’m feeling or how greatly I’ve sinned. Jesus wants to meet me right where I am. He wants be the first person I turn to because He’s already paid the price to remove my separation from God. Romans 8:38-39 says that there is no power that can separate me from the love of God through Christ – even sins and emotions are powerless. As soon as I ask forgiveness, my relationship with God is restored.
Jesus also knows that I’m going to have messy emotions because I’m not meant to understand everything. God clearly tells me just that in Isaiah 55:8, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the LORD.”
Likewise, Proverbs 3:5-6 advises me to,” Trust the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways submit to him and he will make your paths straight.”.
I can’t possibly understand all the circumstances God allows in my life, but I do know that God can work all things in my life for good and that He does want me to process it all with Him.
So, how do I pray when I feel distanced from God or I don’t seem to have the words? Here are several suggestions I find helpful to begin communicating with God again:
Ways to Reconnect with God
* Praise God for who He is and that He is unchanging – He is not overwhelmed by emotions or circumstances.
* Glorify God because He is sovereign and because He is always in control.
* Give thanks for God’s love and goodness, recognizing that His plans for me are always good – even though I may not understand them.
* Thank Jesus for taking the punishment for my sins and for redeeming my broken relationship with God through His blood poured out.
* Pray God’s promises and Scripture back to Him, knowing and believing that every word of it is true.
* Pour out my feelings through written prayer. Often times The Holy Spirit will reveal underlying issues, offer me encouragement, and bring me to a place of peace through writing.
* Admit my sin, seek forgiveness, and repent.
These prayer habits humble me and soften my heart to be open with God once again. It’s so important for me to stay in communication with God. When I stop praying, I leave myself open for the Enemy speak into my life. I exchange truth for lies and head straight down the path to self-condemnation, which is never a good place to be. But I know that there is no condemnation for us who are in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1). Jesus is gentle, patient, and delights in hearing my prayers.
“He delights in the prayers of the upright.” Proverbs 15:8b