Tuesday, August 12, 2014

A Dangerous Prayer

Some days it hurts to breathe.  Somedays the rain falling matches perfectly the tears from our eyes that just don't seem to end. Some days it feels like the whole world is falling apart; and that's because it is.

The more you look around you the more suffering, sorrow and madness you see. Children dying of cancer, old men in a shell of their former body struggling to remember who the person sitting across the table from them is, persecution, murder, babies born sleeping, people starving to death, hate, greed, destruction, disease, chaos, wars, young girls are forced into sex slavery and violence rages on around us while we watch.

At times the sorrow seems unbearable. Every time I hear of a baby born sleeping, a person dying slowly from an agonizing disease, watch my Grandpa with dementia, or any other senseless act of evil it makes me cry. There are days and moments when the sorrow of this world is just too much for me.

Nine years ago in Mozambique, on my face in the dirt, I begged God for every part of His heart. I begged Him to let me know His heart in the fullness of His joy and the depths of His suffering. I wanted to have things hurt me that hurt Him, and to feel His pride when things brought Him honor. I wanted my heart to beat to the same rythym of His and not for one minute to live any other way. At the time, our fearless leader Leslie-Ann Leighton told us that was a dangerous prayer.  I heard her say that and I thought to myself, "its time for the world to have dangerous Christians." And I still firmly believe that. Not for one moment would I choose to take back that prayer.

So here I am, 9 years and a million tears later. My friend lost her baby two days ago. I know that it broke God's heart because it broke mine. There are thousands of Christians,  including children, being mutilated and persecuted in other countries. I know that breaks God's heart because mine is breaking too.  We live in a broken world, and it should matter to us. There are people hurting and dying every second, and it should matter to us. The problem with our world isn't what is going on in it; the problem is that it doesn't matter to us.

If we truly want to know God, to know His heart; that means the down times too. That means sitting with God while He cries, that's what He does with us. Our relationship with God is designed to be intimate, more intimate than our relationship with our spouse. When my husband's father died unexpectedly last year I sat up all night and cried with him. Have you ever done that with God? Have you ever spent a night unable to sleep because of the sorrow your Savior was experiencing?

The world has enough apathy. The church has turned a blind eye and deaf ear for too many years. In our technological age social interaction has become limited and avoidable. And while you may insist that your smartphone or Ipod doesn't hamper your relationships, did you realize that God doesn't text? He won't tag you in His Facebook status update or tweet at you. His LinkedIn profile doesn't exist.

Its easier than ever to avoid the negativity in this world. But the One you were made to be one with doesn't avoid it. He experiences it over and over every day. He cries for the brokenhearts and lives lost.

Do I expect one person to change the world? Will any one person actually end human trafficking or stop the persecution of Christians in the Middle East? Of course not. But the church can.

God tells us in the Bible that "the prayers of a righteous man avails much." Jesus died for us to make us righteous in God. So there you go; you are made righteous in Jesus which means that your prayers can change the world!

Be bold,  pray a dangerous prayer! Ask God to give you His heart, and then when He gives it to you, DO SOMETHING WITH IT! Start praying when you feel God's heart breaking. Release prayers that bring hope, peace and life. We can't change the world on our smartphones, but we sure can change it on our knees.

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