Lately, I am praying more. Others' experience of having quiet time with the Lord made me want to pray more. I want the peace that goes beyond all understanding. I want to follow Jesus more. The problem is that it is boring.
Now, I am not saying that Jesus is boring, or that the Holy Spirit is, or that the Father is. Heaven forbid. They are infinitely exciting. I am talking about the fourth person in our group: me.
What a whiner. Get me this. Give me that. I want a new computer. I want … I want … I want. If patience was tree bark, I would stripped the patience off of a 500-year-old redwood, and that damage was only done in yesterday’s time with God. Talk about one shallow dude.
Do I pray for world peace? Nah, I ask for help losing weight. Do I ask for healing for those I see that need it? Nah, I ask for Pizza to be non-fattening. Do I ask for wisdom? Nah, I ask for my post to go viral and for people to talk about me. I did I mention me? I listen more to my culture than to God. My culture tells me that its all about me and my wants with Madison Avenue asking me to make my life about me, me, me.
After all, it is easier to sell stuff to the self-absorbed! (Suckers unite!)
I just happen to agree the ads and make myself a good consumer even when approaching the Almighty.
God, I didn’t like the weather yesterday. Rain? Really, God? I wanted to go outside for fun. I want my money back.
I understand that this weakness in me, and ask for God to make me a better person, one that others will admire and who others will want to emulate because of my strong Christian faith. I am like a self-absorbed cheerleader who gets an audience with the Queen of England and uses the opportunity to complain about her best friend being designer-challenged or her hangnail that is just so, so, so annoying. I really get a good look at my own shallowness within God’s attention.
Hence, why I don’t like it. It is more of a brief yawn of the soul rather than a dark night of the soul.
Hence, why it is important to do. Loving God and others is not natural for me.
And this why I find myself fighting going into prayer. See, when I prayerfully read the Bible, I always cast myself as the hero within the story. I am the hero that comes and blows the horn for the walls to tumble, or frees the Egyptian slaves, or even stops the injustice of the crucifixion. Hollywood movie hero to the rescue.
Finally, I have the really bad habit of thinking that I am doing God a favor by spending time with God. Okay, let’s do this prayer thing, I say, and I will give God a half hour of the day’s 24. Aren’t I good?
When I get to praying, I realize how shallow I really am, and I don’t like it. Notice, I am speaking to the creator of all, and I am prancing around thinking that God should be grateful for my face time. Really? Wow, what a jerk I am.
Of course, I know I am alone in my shallowness. Others pray for the important stuff like loving others. I must be the only one that makes prayer all about himself.