God doesn’t need to be summoned, as though God is off somewhere lounging until called upon. God is already present, at work, and aware of our situations and needs, and it’s us who need to be present and aware of that.
I’ve been thinking about how we pray, or more accurately how I pray I guess I should say. Sometimes I mindlessly pray something like, “God, be with me while I…” whatever the activity or event might be. Sometimes I ask God to be with someone else during a tough time, a sickness, or some other situation. It occurs to me that that’s kind of a ridiculous prayer. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not ridiculous to pray, and it’s not ridiculous to ask God to help me, or others, in a time of need.
It’s kind of a ridiculous prayer, because we don’t ever have to ask God to be present. That’s what God does—or more accurately that’s who God is. God is omnipresent we say. Always present, always aware, always caring and looking upon us with love. God is fully vested in our lives, aware of what we are going through, and God is already with us and seeking connection with us. So why on earth would I pray that God would suddenly be present when that is already who God is in the first place?
The real prayer ought to be, “God, help me be present to You. Help me to be aware of your presence. Help me to consciously be with you.”
It’s easy to become self-absorbed in my own stuff and forget that there is a life and world outside of mine. It’s easy to become so consumed in my own stuff that I am unaware of God’s presence with me in all situations. God doesn’t need to be summoned, as though God is off somewhere lounging until called upon. God is already present, at work, and aware of our situations and needs. It’s actually ME who needs to be present to, and with, God.
So my prayer has changed recently, and perhaps that’s a helpful shift for you.
“God, help me be present to You.”
How does this change of perspective affect the way you envision God, and perhaps the way you might pray?
Husband, father, pastor, and Steelers fan. Lover of coffee, dogs, and bourbon.