The season of Lent begins and I take the challenge of a blogger to pray the promises of God. It seems I’ve lost a bit of my passion when it comes to praying for things that are left unanswered.
Surely you’ve been there too? Days turn into months and then years and your prayers sound like a skipping record. Same requests… same heartfelt desire for God to work… same dissappointment. Slowly resignation sets in, and you move to other prayers thinking God knows best. After all his timing is perfect. Without realizing it you find yourself accepting what is with little hope for transformation or change. Passion wanes and your fire’s flame burns down to a glowing coal in the midst of ashes.
Remember that you are dust and to dust you shall return.
As I write these words, we are in the midst of a terrible ice storm. Many have lost power in subfreezing cold with no way to generate heat. I stoke the fire and pray for passion. Because what I do know is no amount of willpower will fan the flames in my soul. Any attempt to reignite my own passion is much like an electric faux fireplace. It may look beautiful and give off heat, but no matter how real it looks, it is not the same.
I can see the benefits of this kind of fireplace insert. No need to haul or stack wood, no work in arranging kindling just so, no tending necessary. Perhaps the best part of a faux fire is there’s no mess to clean up. But what happens when the power grid goes down? What happens when the only source of heat in the house is useless to warm at least one room?
Manufactured passion is not what I want. I want the real thing inspite of the work and mess it makes. I want passion only God can flame.
Priscilla Shirer’s words softly blow across the coals of my soul.
But when we talk about passion in prayer, I sure don’t want to leave the impression that the only prayer God hears is the kind that’s spoken at high volume, with sweat and tears and shaking fists and extraordinary energy. Prayer can be silent and still seethe with passion. And on some days, at some times, prayer–for any of us–can start out as simply an obedient appointment, an act of discipline, showing up in that prayer closet because it’s the appointed time that we said we’d be there. Because praying–reaching outward and upward to Him–is the way His passion comes down.Fervent by Priscilla Shirer
Only God can fan these glowing coals of passion in my soul. Only the work of his Spirit provides the oxygen required to burn brightly. God alone provides the energy and strength to haul the fire’s fuel, and stack it just so.
I’ll give you a new heart, put a new spirit in you. I’ll remove the stone heart from your body and replace it with a heart that’s God-willed, not self-willed. I’ll put my Spirit in you and make it possible for you to do what I tell you and live by my commands.–Ezekiel 36:26-27 MSG
Still, there is something I can do. I can show up. No matter how I feel or how busy I think I am. Showing up is all I really can do. Because when I reach upward to God in prayer the path is set for His passion to come down.
This Lenten season I am setting aside time to show up, trusting it is more than enough to ignite a roaring flame in this girl’s soul.
What about you? How’s your passion for prayer lately? What does your fire look like?
Come… join me on this journey of prayer for passion. Consider how God is calling you to show up. And then if you feel so led, won’t you share it in the comments. For “two are better than one because they have a good reward for their toil. For if they fall, one will lift up his fellow” (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10 ESV).