Prayer part 2

So I said in my last post that I would give my thoughts on prayer.

I do think that prayer is valuable.  I think the main point of prayer is to align your will with God’s will.  First of all, you have to believe and accept that God has a plan and that He has everything under control.  If you don’t believe that it would be pretty hard for you to want to align with His plan.

But when you look at the way Jesus teaches us to pray in the gospels we don’t see examples of asking for certain things.

Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth, as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread,
and forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptations,
but deliver us from evil.

-Matthew 6:9-13

The only part of that prayer that sees us asking for anything is when we ask to “give us this day our daily bread”.  And when you really think about it, you can survive off of less than you think.  It isn’t give us this day our daily all-you-can-eat-buffet.  So the majority of our prayer shouldn’t just be a long to-do list for God.  Jesus says that should be about 1/4th of your prayer.  The rest of the prayer calls us to praise God, ask for forgiveness and to pray for God’s will to be done in order to bring the kingdom of heaven to Earth.

So if we pray for something and it doesn’t happen, then we have to be at peace in the fact that God has things under control.  And that is hard sometimes!  Especially when you pray for someone to get better and they don’t, or for someone to stay safe on a trip and they don’t return.  These are “good” things so it is hard to deal with when it doesn’t happen.

So I think we should pray, but not necessarily for the reason of us asking for things.  We should pray in order to have that conversation/relationship with God so that maybe, just maybe, we can be a little more in tune with Him so that we can be more at peace and in-line with His plan.

- Jacob

Prayer

So my young adult small group is currently reading through the book Gray Areas by Mike Glenn.  We are only two chapters in but last night we had great discussions for almost 2 hours.  Most of the discussion kind of got away from the topic of the chapter, but it was still great.

One question posed by another person was on the topic of prayer.  He wondered if God already has a will and is going to do what He is going to do, does it matter if we pray?  He gave examples of praying for someone to be safe on a trip or for someone to be healed and said if God has already decided that it is “their time” to go, will my praying really make a difference?  And if not, why should I even pray?  Others then listed examples from scripture where people prayed and seemingly “changed God’s mind”.  The most notable example of this is Exodus 32:1-14.

I personally think prayer is valuable and important and have my own reasoning behind it, but I wanted to hear from some other people before I give my input.  Do you think prayer changes things?  Is prayer for us?  Should we just let God’s will happen and go with the flow?

Leave your answer in the comments.

- Jacob

Procrastination

So I’ve been back from camp for a week now and I’ve only posted once.  I meant to only take one week off because of camp but I’ve now taken two weeks off unintentionally.  Part of the reason is because I’ve been so tired.  A few days I’ve slept in later than I planned to do and I’ve also had to work this week as well.  Here are a few things I’m doing that are taking up my time:

- Watching The Leftovers on HBO.  It’s a new show (I’m finally into a show when it is actually airing on TV instead of binge watching to catch up).

- Reading DC’s Doom Patrol comics.  I heard about these a while ago and I bought them online immediately after.  So far they are pretty good.

- Reading Gray Areas, a new book by Mike Glenn.  My young adult bible study is going through this book right now.

- Playing Betrayal At House On The Hill with friends.  Great game, but don’t pay $195 for it.  It’s out of print right now so people are gouging the price online.

I hope to get back into more regular posts now that I’ve had a week to recuperate.  What about you. What do you do to procrastinate?  Also, have you watched, read or played any of the things listed above?

- Jacob

Periods and the Two Spaces After Them.

Today’s daily prompt asks:

“We all have strange relationships with punctuation — do you overuse exclamation marks? Do you avoid semicolons like the plague? What type of punctuation could you never live without? Tell us all about your punctuation quirks!”

I hate texting lingo.  When I text I write things as if I’m writing a paper for school.  I never abbreviate things or use numbers as parts of a word.  I always capitalize my letters when needed and I use proper punctuation.  I know it is supposed to be faster and easier but I just hate it.  I hate reading it and I can’t make myself type it (unless I’m doing it on purpose to be stupid or make fun of it).

Along with that, I was taught in a keyboarding class my freshman year in high school that you are supposed to put two spaces after a sentence when typing.  Ever since then I have always done that.  Later in life I learned that a lot of people don’t like that (although I’m not sure how they notice) and that some people even think that is wrong.  Apparently it was a type writer thing and you don’t need to do it on computers but that is what I was taught and for some reason I always do it.  You can check through all my posts on here and find two spaces after each period.

What are your weird punctuation habits?

- Jacob