The Secrets of Griping, Panicking and Asking Prayers
- 2012 21 Feb
Matthew kept stopping, looking up at the sky and saying, “Stop it, stop it.” My three-year-old grandson seemed agitated while we were on our ritual walk to the mailbox. I finally asked him, “Matthew, who are you talking to?” He said, “Nana, I’m talking to God, I want Him to stop the wind.”
I smiled and said, “Oh,” and kept walking. Matthew lives in southern Alberta, Canada, where the wind is so strong that often it stopped him from being able to play outside. He was tired of the wind robbing him of his fun; and he wanted it to stop -- now.
As soon as we arrived home, he jumped on the sofa and stood there looking out the window at the sky. Soon I heard the excited shout, “Nana, look, God stopped the wind!”
I love his simple, trusting faith; talking to God like He was his best friend. I desire that we all have this kind of faith in prayer; never doubting or being critical, but trusting God like a little child. Children have not yet learned to be cynical or doubtful. They love and trust authentically, and unconditionally.
One of our greatest human needs is to know that someone is listening to us. Throughout the Bible, God continually reassures us that we have His focused attention. He is listening and waiting for us to tell Him everything that is troubling us. He knows you and I carry heavy burdens every day. When our loved ones, our children, grandchildren or other people we love walk around with frowns on their faces, their shoulders hunched over and look like they are carrying the weight of the world on their shoulders, we want to help them, but they need to ask. Peter the fisherman wrote to us saying, “Cast all your anxiety on him (God) because he cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7 NIV).
Do you have a boatload of trouble?
- God designed marriage; so He cares deeply when your marriage is in trouble.
- You have gotten yourself in a tight agenda, but He is willing to help you untangle this mess.
- When our bank is account is empty and the cupboards are bare.
- You are in the middle of relationship conflict. God is the healer of broken hearts and the restorer and reconciler of relationships.
- You have never been able to deal with your abortion, sexual abuse or other sexual sin. God will heal, and restore your heart.
Why are we afraid to ask? In their practical, insightful book, God Will Make a Way, Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend give this encouragement: “The very great news is that when we ask God for help, we have instantly transcended our own limitations. We have stepped over to the side of a God who has infinite ways to grace us with all the resources we really need.”
God already knows all the griping going on in our hearts, He just wants us to be gut-level honest with all of our struggles. I call it being “naked and unashamed” the same way that Adam and Eve were in the Garden of Eden while they were still in beautiful, fulfilling harmony with God.
I love King David’s honesty in the Psalms, lamenting, cursing, telling God to kill his enemies, then praising God and extolling words of admiration and begging for forgiveness. When we are going through our own "meltdowns," our minds can be a mass of confusion and sometimes bad thoughts form in our minds. David was not afraid to express his emotions and neither should you or I. God knows what’s in our heart, so let’s be true to ourselves and tell God everything -- every nasty detail -- and then ask for forgiveness.
While griping doesn’t sound very spiritual, when we share our deepest frustrations, disappointments and yearnings with the one who truly loves us and listens to cries; we will feel validated and are able to move forward.
We need to have trusting faith like my grandson Mathew and “just ask God.” Think of all the anguish, sleepless nights, text messages to friends, valuable time and energy we could save if we run to God first.
Remember He is your one true trusted friend who is passionate about helping you. His promise is: “And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask me anything in my name, and I will do it” (John 14: 13, 14 NIV.)
Knowing that there is someone who will listen to all my struggles and still love me has been one of my life’s greatest and exhilarating faith steps.
Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend, God Will Make A Way (Brentwood, TN 37027: Integrity Publishers, 2002), 21.
Heidi McLaughlin is an international speaker and author. Her latest book SAND TO PEARL: Making BOLD Choices to Enrich your Life, has been a tool to inspire women. Heidi is married to Pastor Jack and they live among the beautiful vineyards in Kelowna, B.C., Canada. Click here to visit her website.
Publication date: February 21, 2012