- Lord, at the beginning of this Lenten season, I sense my need of you; yet, I am not quite sure how to reach you.
- I heard someone say, ‘Read your Bible.’ But too often the words are like bullets that ricochet off my brain.
- I heard someone say, ‘Pray.’ But my prayers, hurled heaven ward, fall back to earth like lifeless stones.
- I heard someone say, ‘Meditate.’ But my wandering mind was lost in a desert of random thoughts.
Could this prayer by Robin Van Cleef describe your spiritual life at times? Trust me, you are not alone! The first words I see early in the morning are usually from a computer screen or morning newspaper instead of God’s Holy Word. Not good! Sometimes reading the Bible is a stimulating journey of fresh discoveries while other times more a discipline or even a chore. It’s sad but true. Forgive me Lord!
Do you ever pray and wonder if anyone is listening? I do. Prayer can be a daily delight where you feel bathed in the very presence of God. But prayer can also be a desperate plea for a rope to help you climb from the deep dark depths. But the rope does not always seem to be there. Prayer can be a cry for answers… sometimes there is only silence. “Where are you God?”
Meditation seems too slow for my hectic lifestyle. I tend to seek stimulation rather than meditation… a comfortable conversation instead of lonely contemplation… entertainment rather than education. “Meditation? Me? I’m too busy right now Lord but after I retire and sit in the old rocking chair… “
Spiritual growth seldom happens naturally. Lent is a time of preparation for Easter: A time to remember the life and death of Jesus before we celebrate the resurrection of Christ. Lent is an opportunity to renew and deepen our relationship with God. Read your Bible. Join a Bible study. Look for fresh opportunities to pray. Ask your friends for permission to pray for them. Find a quiet place and read something you find spiritually inspiring. Then, sit back and quietly think or… meditate.
Over this particular Lenten season, God wants to reach out and touch you, embrace you and love you. But we must be willing to do our part. Is it easy? Of course not. Will it be worthwhile? With patience and perseverance… always!
- Don’t be impatient for the Lord to act! Travel steadily along His path. He will honor you… (Psalm 38:34)
- So think clearly and exercise self-control. Look forward to the special blessings that will come… (1 Peter 2:13)
- One day soon afterward Jesus went to a mountain to pray and he prayed to God all night. At daybreak, He chose… (Luke 6:12)
- Pray at all times and on every occasion in the power of the Holy Spirit. Stay alert and be persistent… (Ephesians 6:18)
Did you notice God emphasizing patience, steady travel, self-control and persistence? But did you also detect God’s promises? God will honor you. You may look forward to special blessings. You will discover guidance for making difficult choices. You will receive the power of God’s Holy Spirit.
The prayer at the beginning by Robin Van Cleef admits three areas of struggle then continues…
- Lord, speak to me through your Word and let it penetrate my mind and my heart.
- Lord, speak to me through Prayer, and turn the lifeless stones to bread.
- Lord, speak to me in my Meditation, that I may see, amid life’s wilderness: The way, the truth and the life.
Wow! The only word I can think to add is… Amen.