Procrastination prayers

rightThingThere comes a moment when praying becomes a form of spiritual procrastination. It’s time to stop praying and start acting. ~Mark Batterson, in A Circle of Prayer

I write this in the middle of two posts about making prayer a way of life, praying without ceasing, about God’s response to our prayers–all taken from Colossians 4:2-4. At first glance, this looks like a contradiction, but read on.

STOP PRAYING and START ACTING.

  • You are praying, “Oh, Lord, please send the right person to do something about this situation,” and you realize, you are equipped and able.
  • You are praying for those dying of AIDS all across the world while the same time wondering what to buy with your bonus money.
  • You are praying for God to help you love your neighbors, even though their front yard looks like they are reverting to wild prairie, just before you go outside to mow your lawn.
  • You pray for God to help you turn the other cheek, closely followed by getting it in the neck from your boss for something you had no part in.

Mark Batterson’s point is: God has already spoken on these examples. We know His words and guidance, we just need to put them into action. Don’t procrastinate by continuing to pray without action. (Sounds like the book of James, to me.)

Mark Batterson again:

I wonder how many of our prayer requests are within our own power to answer? Yet we ask God to do what we can do ourselves. And then we wonder why God doesn’t respond. Maybe it’s because God won’t do for us what we can do for ourselves. God isn’t honored by prayers that are within the realm of human possibility; God is honored when we ask Him to do what is humanly impossible. That way, God gets all the glory!

Are there places/times in your life when you know what God wants you to do? When it is clear what he requires of you? When we know perfectly well what God wants us to do, but we would rather pray about it than do it? We could call that procrastinating prayer.

I wonder how God will respond in these situations. If we pray about things we have the capability and capacity to do, but choose to pray instead of act when we could pray and act at the same time, we are dragging the very feet that should be stepping in Jesus’ footsteps.

God isn’t honored by prayers that are within the realm of human possibility; God is honored when we ask Him to do what is humanly impossible. That way, God gets all the glory!

Thanks, Mark Batterson, for the reminder.

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