I woke to the sound of my youngest son calling me.
His tone told me everything I needed to know. He was sick, likely nauseated, and he needed help. I sat up in bed, ready to rush to his aid.
As my feet hit the floor, my head cleared, and two facts crowded into my sleepy brain:
1. I had been hearing my husband’s rhythmic breathing, not my son’s calling.
2. My son was not sleeping upstairs. He was over 1,000 miles away (15 hours by car), likely sound asleep in a U.S. Army barracks.
Settling back into cozy sheets and a quiet house, I prayed for my far-away son, and the message of that middle-of-the-night parable was warm beside me: A mother’s hearing, tuned to her child’s voice and need, is a pale shadow when compared to God’s attentiveness to our prayers.
A mother’s hearing, tuned to her child’s voice and need, is a pale shadow when compared to God’s attentiveness to our prayers.Tweet
The welcoming heart of God is at the center of the gospel, and it’s at the center of a praying life. When Jesus offered the invitation, “Come to me, all who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28 NIV), it was not a want ad for the pulled-together and the omni-competent. In A Praying Life, his classic book on prayer, Paul Miller expounds upon the verse this way:
“The criteria for coming to Jesus is weariness. Come overwhelmed with life. Come with your wandering mind. Come messy.”
GOD WANTS TO HEAR YOUR REAL WORDS!
It’s been a month of writing about prayer, and the inspiration started with this essay! Several months ago, Rachel Britton reached out to me with an invitation to write for her site, Praying Naturally, and naturally, I was very happy to send some words her way. Pull up a chair and pour yourself another hot mug-full, because I want to reassure you that God delights in hearing YOUR voice. Even your weariness or your distress is worthy content for prayer as you offer up your true self from the heart. I look forward to meeting with you there.
Praying for YOU!
When we come to God carrying nothing but our need, admitting that we are “weary and burdened,” we have truly begun to pray.Tweet
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