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Your Life is a Story: You Choose the Ending
When prayer is our lifeline then we partner with God and come into a greater fullness of fulfilling God’s plans and purposes for our lives.

In his book, Know Your Story, Shape Your Future, Dan Allender, writes:

“You are a story.  You are not merely the possessor and teller of a number of stories; you are a well-written, intentional story that is authored by the greatest Writer of all time, and even before time and after time.”

… my own thinking created a disconnect between God and myself. 

Prayer is one of the primary themes in our story.  We are impoverished if we regard prayer as a religious activity.  When prayer is our lifeline - our spiritual breathing - then we partner with God and come into a greater fullness of fulfilling God’s plans and purposes for our lives.

The power of prayer is best seen in our daily lives. Prayer changes and transforms us. Prayer is far more than asking and receiving, it is becoming. 

When we pray, we create our own prayer atmosphere by our thinking and attitudes. Our attitudes are shaped by our thoughts.  Our thoughts form our prayers. John Ortberg in his book, God Is Closer Than You Think, writes:  “Being with God is something that takes place primarily in our thoughts, our mind. To experience the closeness of God, it means a revolution of the mind.”
 
Back in my teen years, when I fought insecurity, acute shyness and a limited purpose, my praying came out of my own insecurity.  I approached prayer with trepidation. I battled questions such as: “Does God care for me? What do I have to prove to God to be accepted?  Would God just drop me if I didn’t reach a level of personal goodness?” In those days, I felt I wasn’t being embraced by God. I failed to understand what was recorded in His Word. He loved me with an everlasting love and would never leave me nor forsake me.  He was embracing me and lovingly calling me into His presence but my own thinking created a disconnect between God and myself. I was in a self-inflicted prison and only Word-based prayer could set me free. How we view ourselves is the most revealing commentary on our theology and can be the greatest hindrance in prayer development. 

In later years, as a pastor’s wife, I kept an extremely busy schedule and battled the Spirit’s gentle call to prayer.  I resisted because my mind and heart were elsewhere.  At one mid-week church prayer meeting, I had a wake-up call when, surrounded by incredible intercessors, I found myself writing out my grocery list.

Only Word-based praying could transform my thinking...

Multitasking and my demanding schedule pulled me farther from my heavenly Father.  He seemed removed, unreachable.  Only Word-based praying could transform my thinking and bring me into a place of spiritual hunger.

A personal crisis was the catalyst God used to call me to intercession. Emotionally drained, I turned to God’s Word.  The book of Ephesians became like a stream of fresh water to my parched and weary soul.  I studied and prayed Paul’s prison prayers – word by word and phrase by phrase – assimilating God’s truth into my spirit. My prayer time steadily increased until an hour in prayer seemed like mere minutes.

Prayer became an incubator for change. God’s Word came alive in my heart – my thinking was transformed!  I finally saw God as able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine or think according to His power that is at work within us.  I saw myself as chosen, called in partnership with God to fulfill His plans and purpose for my life.

The plot of our stories could forever change if we prayed the Scriptures, allowing His truth to change our thoughts and attitudes, transforming our prayers by becoming a divine partnership – one page at a time.

Margaret Gibb is the president of Women Alive and a regular columnist in the Christian Herald.  Visit Women Alive  to discover inspiring events for women and teen girls in your area!

 

 

Originally published in Christian Herald, September 2007.

 

 
 
 
 

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