Are you willing to pay THAT MUCH?

Did you know it is dangerous to pray? Have you ever considered what you might be asking for when you throw your prayers up into the air? Do you think about what ripple effect of that prayer being answered might be? Have you ever considered the cost?

The girls and I have been watching the tv series Once Upon a Time. In that series, the bad guy often warns people requesting to make a deal with him in exchange for his magic powers that magic always comes at a cost.

Prayer isn’t magic. God is not a magician waiting for us to make a deal with him in exchange for His power. He isn’t waiting for us to make an incorrect request so He can get us. He doesn’t even want our well thought out and rehearsed prayers, I don’t think.

But!

Answered prayers do come at a cost. Think about it. One family prays for a loved one to receive an organ transplant and that prayer is answered while another family is saying goodbye to their loved one who just became an organ donor. Another family prays that their son or daughter will not be chosen to go into battle as another’s son or daughter fills that space.

Maybe the prayers aren’t as big and one family prays their child will get picked for a limited number of spots on a team while another family consoles their child who just missed out because they didn’t make the cut. A mom prays for a way to connect with her child and ends up with a box of brownies in her car while another mom is inconvenienced and gets home without the brownies she had planned to make for her family.

God is not a God of limited resources but we do live in a reality of limits until Jesus’s return. Yes, we can and should pray Heaven to Earth now but there are still limits. There are limits and free will and consequences that all affect our prayers in ways I sure don’t always understand. It won’t stop me from praying for Heaven’s realities to invade this earth and the lives of those around me, but I know that there are a lot of moving parts.

I’ve known for a while that prayers could be costly. I’ve jokingly, or not so jokingly, said I won’t pray for patience because I knew how patience was formed. I’ve prayed for wisdom and been thrust head long into situations that weren’t so pleasant that required wisdom. I’ve asked for revelation and received more than I thought I really wanted to know.

This morning I was listening to a podcast and the preacher was preaching on love. At the end of the sermon he asked everyone to stand because he was going to pray that God would teach them to love bigger than they ever had before. He was going to pray that they learn how to love the unlovable. I guess he could see some people cringing. He joked that he was going to pray for them whether they wanted the prayer or not.

Um…

I want to love better than I do now. I want to learn to love those around me more like He loves them. I want to learn to love with the same intensity that He loves me.

And then I pause…

He loved people who hated him.

He loved people who spit in his face.

He loved people who beat him.

He loved people who mocked him.

He loved people who crucified him.

He loved people who others had written off.

He loved liars and cheats and criminals.

He loved deceivers.

He loved adulterers.

He loved murderers.

He loved people who doubted him.

What if I pray that prayer and the only way it can be answered is for me to actually love those kinds of people? What if that is a lesson that can only be learned in the trenches? What price am I really willing to pay to learn to love like He loved? What if I have to hang out with “unlovable” people to learn to love like Him?

What if someone has to hang out with me to learn to love like Him?

 

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Brought to You by Smart Phone(s)

What would a family gathering of 14 people be without an adventure? What would an adventure be without getting lost…twice…with Siri guiding the way?

My step sister and I embarked on a journey to the park with two teenagers. This meant we had a total of 4 smart phones to guide the way. We are staying in a vacation rental that advertised a nearby park. So, after a scrumptious Thanksgiving meal we headed out…on foot.

The first stop brought us to an empty field. Uh, that was not a park. I think someone needs to tell Siri what a park is. This was my one shot and Siri blew it. My step sister decided to take over. Surely her phone was smarter than mine.

By this time my sister in law and 3 year old nephew had decided to join us. Lucky for them we had made our way back to a location that was on their way to the park. We told them we knew where we were going and off we went. And went. And went.

Then we arrived…

Here…

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Um…this is not a park either. I am not sure who was responsible for this navigation but they clearly did not know what a park is either.

Here is the discussion that ensued…

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Maybe the sister-in-law and 3 year old nephew could help us find this park. I am pretty sure it was the nephews magic powers that helped up get there. I think he keeps them in that fancy blue ball.

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While we were there we decided to take advantage of the beautiful surroundings and snap a few cousin pics.

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After our long hike and fun at the park we decided it would be dark before we could get home if we walked back. And really, who knows where we would have ended up?

Thankfully we had a way to call for help and the rescue squad came to get us. Somehow they didn’t get lost.

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So, the next time you want to go to the park, you can either call this crew…

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Or a cute little 3 year old with super powers and a shiny blue ball!

Hide and Seek with Daddy! :)

I just finished writing and posting my blog for the day. It is 9:35am and I have writing marked off my mental to do list for the day. I’m sitting here alone in my thoughts with the rest of the mental to do list. The handsome fella is finishing up a short day at work and will be home soon to begin some extended time off for the Thanksgiving Holiday. The girls are doing what teenage girls do when they don’t have to get up to go to school…sleeping in. I have much to do but I want to keep writing. In reality, I may not write as much as I’d like this week, so why not take advantage of the fact that something caught my eye right after I entered my last post and caused me to want to keep going?

After I entered my last post, I clicked over to take a look at the stats on my page. I was particularly curious to see how this month was looking because it hasn’t been a stellar month for me in the daily blogging challenge. I wanted to see if I was going to be anywhere near pulling off a decent month after a very rough start. My blog is mostly read by close friends and family, so I don’t get huge numbers, but this month will be half of the usual hits for the first time in 7 months. The graph on this site shows a 30 month cycle. At least this month isn’t an all time low on that chart. Although this month will likely be about 50% less than the past 7 months, there was a month on the chart that was actually 50% less than this month.

Why was my blog traffic so low in June 2013? Why was I drawn to that fact this morning?

Well, for one thing there were only 9 posts that entire month. You don’t actually get many readers if you don’t supply them with something to read. I thought I’d look for clues about why I wasn’t writing much that month, but instead I found something God wanted me to see for right now. 🙂 Click here and you can read the post He led me to. If you’ve read my earlier post, you will know that I wrote about my relationship with Him. You will know I wrote about hiding. You will know I wrote about seeking. And just as I’m finished writing about those things, He found a way to highlight something He wanted me see. 🙂

If you have been raised with Christ, keep seeking things above, where Christ is… Set your mind on things above, not on things that are on earth. For you have died and your life is hidden with Him. Col 3:1-3

Um, yeah! God has a little to say to ME about Hide and Seek, doesn’t He? 🙂