What Prayer IS – A Reality Check

Have you ever had to go into a meeting with a person (or persons) you really didn’t like? What did your preparation time for that meeting look like? For me, typically, the moments preceding look like I’m psyching myself up for an MMA championship: I talk smack about the person and puff myself up. I lay out in my mind how all of our interactions will go, practicing each witty retort until I’m fully understood and, without anyone else having to say a word, victorious.

That’s when I need a reality check.

For years I went through this daydreaming situation and guess what – none of the scenarios ever happened. In fact, these dreaded interactions ranged somewhere between decent and poor depending on a number of factors. Regardless of their outcome, I began to realize over time that my excessive imaginings weren’t the most productive way of preparing for a meeting; praying is a much better option.

For me, many of these prayer times begin as daydreaming situations until I realize just how unproductive this use of my imagination is. I find myself landing blow after verbal blow on my target and then, as I have the next one locked and loaded, I remember that this isn’t who I’m supposed to be. I’m not called to hold grudges and humiliate people. It’s not my job to give a verbal smackdown just so that I prove how intelligent I am. I’m called to love and be an instrument of restoration and freedom (which is much harder than the gratifying exchange I had imagined). Then I repent. Then I begin to pray.

When I get caught up in my head prayer helps me to focus on the most important things and let the other stuff, the fleshy stuff, the things I can so easily let define and distract me, fall away {tweet this}. When I enter into a meeting after having prayed instead of imagined, the meeting isn’t necessarily better, I might still get a pile of work dumped on me or we might not all see eye to eye or communicate clearly, but I’ve found that my perspective is usually better. Because I entered the situation with a clear view of the reality of it all, I can maintain a level head and a submitted heart.

Whether you’re interacting with people you like or dislike, you feel unqualified or overqualified, prideful or humiliated, annoyed or happy, approach God with those things today. Consult his word and remember who you are in Christ. Let Jesus’s words wash over you and take every one of your thoughts captive and make sure they line up with Truth. Let’s be intentional to begin today with a reality check and see how that will influence the rest of our day!


 

If you don’t have a prayer journal, you can download one at sarahjcallen.com/prayer

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2 Comments

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  1. Loved this post, especially when you said that you pray instead of imagined. That’s a word from above . . . so often our imaginations get the best of us. Thank you for this wonderful reminder today Sarah 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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