Because this is all that can be managed. Well unless you’re a super Christian and have the key to get God to work how you want Him to. If you are then you have to stop reading and comment on this post and tell the rest of us! Alas, if you are like me with only hope in God’s promises then please feel free to keep reading.
So I go to a Christian event and I know a time is coming where the leader of said event will invite a time of prayer. I look around the room and see two things. The first being the squirmers, whether they are nervous to pray for people they have just met or they are petrified about revealing a hint of their brokenness. The second thing I see is the smiles. The smiles confidently walk up to someone they know is struggling and launch head first into prayer. I sit and watch in awe, ‘how is it possible for this guy to say so many words …?’ ‘What could he possibly be saying …?’ I watched and always thought they were better than me; that they had a better relationship with God than me.
I thought this until grace hit me like a brick wall. By grace I was shown the blackness of my heart and by grace I was shown that Christ’s blood washes me clean. I realised how undeserving of the righteousness offered to me I was. Now this stark and crazy realisation started to form little ideas in my head. ‘If I can’t save myself then I can’t put God into the position where he owes me and therefore prayer isn’t about how many words I say!’ Alleluia. Surely it is also no longer about the amount of faith I have either. My emotions and feelings can be all over the place, I am just asked to have faith the size of a mustard seed, faith that something could happen. I can do that! I can trust that my salvation (a gift from God) and therefore miracles (gifts from God) lie outside of what I can do. Praise God.
Staring at me in the face is the great Christian paradox. If I surrender all my ‘power’ and say ‘God, I cannot do this,’ I gain freedom. So when you are next asked to pray for someone merely ask the Holy Spirit to be present and ask God to do what He wants to do. Realise your own limitations and if someone reveals something of their brokenness to you, whatever it is, the Cross of Christ is sufficient.