It wasn’t exactly what I wanted. In fact, it wasn’t what I wanted at all. I couldn’t be mad….because I was not specific with Ben. I was vague. He had just gotten back from the grocery store and was putting away the groceries. I hurried downstairs from an afternoon of writing to start dinner. I was helping him put away the groceries and fumbling through the bags to find the seasoning I had asked him to get so that I could start the spaghetti sauce (my mom’s recipe).
Ben had bought McCormick’s chili sauce, not at all what I wanted. Not only was it not French’s brand but it was extra hot chili sauce, with onions….yuk! The brand I always use is French’s Chili sauce–no onions! I was so frustrated with myself. Ben, I am sorry to say, will be leaving Back 9 Ministries in just a few weeks. He has worked part-time with Back 9 for almost a year helping to connect the dots in ministry for me. His expertise has allowed me to grow the ministry, especially in the area of technology and computer skills, both of which I lack.
Not to mention, when I am deep into reading and studying, he will run errands so that my concentration isn’t broken nor my writing frenzy interrupted. :o) He has been great. I had to learn how to employ him to help me, a role I figured out but it was a learning process for me. The one thing I learned as he started working for me last August was that I needed to be specific with him, not vague, especially when it came to grocery shopping. He learned if he was unsure of something to take a picture and send it to me…to make double sure it was what I had in mind.
My point today? Vague prayers get vague answers. Allow me to explain. The more specific we get with our prayers….the more specific we will see God and His answers. If we are vague and general…not specific…how will be able to see God’s answers specifically?
Suggestion: As I have grown in my relationship with God so has my time spent in prayer. It has taken much time and discipline to spend the necessary time in prayer to become very detailed with God. Not hurrying. Becoming more and more detailed in my praise, thanksgiving and requests. It has taken full attention and intention on my part, very much like the discipline I use to go to the gym. Very intentional. Very focused. Time consuming. My work out goes with me after I leave the gym. Why? I have come to understand you cannot out-train what you eat so part of my work out all day every day is what I choose to eat and swallow. It is an all day thing and so it is with prayer.
God tells us to pray continually so in order to grow in my relationship and communication with God I am more detailed and specific as I pray continually. For example, I don’t just say, “Lord help me today. Guide me. Protect me. Show me the way. Forgive me of my sins. Be with our kids. Help them.” And so on and so forth.
It is more like, “Okay God, what do You have for me today? Don’t let me miss it. Help me to recognize you all day long…from where I park at the grocery story ….to anyone I come in contact with. Help me to distinguish Your voice from the enemy’s…and when I do, confirm it to me, so that I know that I know. Weaken the voice of the enemy. Give me your wisdom for the day.
When I sin, convict me immediately. Make my heart heavy. Help me to be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry. Help me understand gentleness breaks a bone…and a harsh word stirs up anger. Help me to live this scripture. God, let me see You all day in everything and everyone. Lower your hands of protection around me and our family and every time you protect, make me aware.
I want to see you. I want to feel you. I want to know and experience you every minute of every hour. When there is something specific you want me to do or say…be crystal clear. I would love to hear you audibly.”
I could go on but I hope you can see how much more specific I have become. And you know what???? I see and experience God on such an intimate level and you know what that has done? It has strengthened my God-fidence. It has given me extreme reassurance that He is present and active every minute and every hour of my life and He does not slumber. I see HIM and FEEL HIM all the time. I am never lonely….ever. I have HIM. :o)
Just yesterday Ben and I were on a run to Sam’s. It was apparent to him and to me that God intervened and His hand of protection was on me as I avoided a wreck. I looked and looked again before I backed up but somehow a red car shot past me and it was only God and His provision that we didn’t collide. Seriously, as we drove away neither one of us knew how I avoided the collision unless it was God. Human reasoning couldn’t explain the avoidance. I love it when someone is with me and sees God show up and show out. Ben and I have seen it a lot in the last year. We laugh a lot…and it has grown our friendship as well….:))))
My dear Back 9’ers…….please understand…God is not vague. He is a God of order and detail. He speaks and moves and is present all the time, engaging and ACTIVE. If you are not experiencing HIS presence, then understand it is my/your/our problem. The problem is self…not God. Psalm 55:17, “Evening and morning and at noon I will pray, and cry aloud, And He shall hear my voice.”
I encourage you today with all my heart…make the time….carve it out of your day. In the morning…get up…spend time with God. Get specific with Him and then go with God. Take Him with you. Develop a continual dialogue with your Creator. YOU WILL SEE HIM. YOU WILL FEEL HIM. YOU WILL EXPERIENCE HIM. Psalm 42:8, “The Lord will command His lovingkindness in the daytime, And in the night His song shall be with me—A prayer to the God of my life.”
The more specific you are…the more detailed you will see Him. You will get the exact “SAUCE” for your life…and the recipe of your life….will be pleasing and tasteful. God is the master Chef. :o)