It’s the prayer of the weary and struggling pilgrim. It was my prayer. That part of my journey had become very long. I saw no end in sight. It had become more than I could bear. I awakened that morning and as usual, I fell to my knees to pray. “Oh GOD, I need you! Please get me through this! I am so tired and ready for it to be over.” And I would stand to my feet, grit my teeth, and dread the day. Perhaps you know how I felt.
I was tired of praying that prayer.
So on that particular morning, I chose to use different words:
“Lord, thank you for this situation.” Somehow, I began to thank GOD for the good things that I was experiencing in spite of my circumstances. I saw them clearly and was truly thankful. In that prayer, something shifted in my mind. The oppressive heaviness of despair lifted like the fog. I felt encouraged and hopeful. I was at a new place emotionally. I no longer dreaded the day. Instead, I had joy. Nothing about my situation had changed, except my perception.
The Second Light Bulb
It was the second light bulb moment for me in two months. Weeks earlier as I prayed for myself, I experienced another mind shift in dealing with my troubles. I learned to pray “Lord, make me more than this.” (see previous post here). The struggles I was facing had a purpose. I wanted them to go away. GOD wanted me to be stronger and wiser. The struggles with fear, discouragement, pride, etc. were accomplishing great good in me. I was beginning to feel like an overcomer, rather than a victim. GOD was making me more than my opposition.
These moments made me wonder what caused the mind shift. Why did these 2 prayers make such a difference rather than the prayers for rescue?
The light came on. I realized that those prayers were the framework of my thinking. I understood that I would think the way that I prayed. When I prayed, “Oh GOD, get me out of this,” I was thinking about how terrible my situation was and I would feel defeated. But when I prayed, “Oh GOD, make me greater than this,” I was thinking about overcoming my situation and I would feel like a warrior. My thoughts were constructed around my prayers. I didn’t realize prayer did this.
Enlarge My Territory
Another example of this is the prayer of Jabez (1 Chronicles 4:10). I pray those words regularly, not as a magical formula, but as a meaningful expression of my heart. When I ask GOD to “enlarge my territory”, I begin thinking about ways I can increase my influence in the world. How can I get my message out to more people? How can I give encouragement and hope to a larger community? How can I multiply what GOD has done and is doing in my life? My prayers are the framework of my thoughts.
My prayers of gratitude and transformation were what GOD wanted me to pray all along. He wanted me to ask Him to make me greater, to be thankful and to share His work in me with more people. He wanted to change me and He wanted me to ask for it. When I did, He answered. Immediately.
Starting Your Day
Your prayers this morning are the launching pad for the rest of your day. Shape your thoughts with prayers of gratitude, transformation and hope. GOD is growing you through this season.
Perhaps the answer you want is not ready to be given. Perhaps the growth GOD wants to give you waits on you to ask. The good He desires to accomplish in you is only a prayer away. Your prayers will be the framework of your thoughts.
How have you experienced transformation through your difficult seasons and prayer? Share your thoughts in the comments box. Your story will encourage the rest of us.