Here’s the thing: I live in an upside-down society corrupted by cynicism.
I live in a world where Brad leaves Jennifer, and my co-worker ends up a single mom with too many bills to pay because her husband bails out.
I live in a world where Milli Vanilli lip syncs, and my insurance company declines my claim for no good reason.
I live in a world where Nixon says he is not a crook, and my pastor resigns due to “moral failure.”
I live in world where a beautiful baby is a fetus with no rights and the sacred covenant of marriage is “redefined.”
I live in a world where praying to Jesus in the public square is considered offensive and where the People of the Cross are massacred.
I see darkness when I turn on the news. I’ve experience heart-wrenching personal disappointment.
It’s easy to understand why I face my mountains with a touch of cynicism.
I’ve become somewhat anesthetized. I’ve developed a thicker skin.
In the quiet of my heart, sometimes it’s hard to believe. I know that God is able to do anything, but I wonder if He really will.
So instead of praying, I take a nap to forget. I go to Starbucks to drown out my sorrows. I watch a Netflix movie to keep myself distracted.
I am resigned instead of resolved.
I forget that I follow a resurrected Savior who conquered death itself to deliver me from the darkness.
I forget that my Father owns it all. He has the whole world in His hands.
I forget that God is still in the business of dismantling strongholds and setting captives free.
I fail to recognize His care.
To pray big, I must dispel doubt every day. This begins by looking to the One who is the Author and Perfecter of my faith. As a wise reader suggested yesterday, I must get on my knees and put God in front of the dark mountain.
I don’t want to live like the whiny Israelites who complained about leaving behind the quail in Egypt and failed to appreciate the manna in their midst.
God has never failed to meet my every need.
Like the hymn writer of old, I must count my many blessings and name them one by one, remembering that the Apostle Paul encourages us to make our requests known with a heart of thanksgiving.
Cynicism looks reality in the face, calls it a phony, and prides itself on its insight as it pulls back. Thanksgiving looks reality in the face and rejoices at God’s care. ~ Paul E. Miller, A Praying Life: Connecting with God in a Distracting World, p. 90
Lord, plant faith in me
that won’t be uprooted by doubt.
“You don’t have enough faith,” Jesus told them.
“I tell you the truth, if you had faith even as small as a mustard seed,
you could say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’
and it would move. Nothing would be impossible.”
Matthew 17:20, NLT
Therefore, let us offer through Jesus
a continual sacrifice of praise to God,
proclaiming our allegiance to His name.
Hebrews 13:15, NLT
So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord,
continue to live your lives in Him,
rooted and built up in Him,
strengthened in the faith as you were taught,
and overflowing with thankfulness.
See to it that no one takes you captive
through hollow and deceptive philosophy,
which depends on human tradition
and the elemental spiritual forces of this world
rather than on Christ.
Colossians 2:6-8, NIV
Let’s Talk: How do you combat cynicism in your prayer life?
Let’s Pray Big in Community:
This year, my desire is to lift up holy hands and “Pray Big.” Want to join me? I’ve created a private “Pray Big” Facebook group for like-minded sisters to share their stories and surrender each one to our mountain-moving God in prayer. Let’s cry out to God together.