We have made it over 3 weeks into our study and look at the book Fervent! If you can’t tell already, I love this book and I think that everyone should read it! But the impact of prayer wasn’t something that just started with this book, and so today I wanted to share an “In Real Life” situation that helped shape my view of what an intentional prayer life might look like.
As I said before, for many years I used prayer as a means to ask God to fix something in my life. Prayer was a bargaining tool I used…“I will do this Lord if you will just do that.” It wasn’t very effective and left me feeling like God wasn’t hearing me.
Praying out loud, in front of others was HARD for me. I was sure that I wasn’t saying things correctly and didn’t want to embarrass myself. It seemed too vulnerable and I wasn’t sure I wanted to go there.
We have always said quick, recited prayers before meals, but only when we were at home. It wasn’t something we had considered doing outside of the home until one day we saw something that changed all of that.
We were in a Taco Bell of all places. We had stopped to grab a quick bite to eat before running a few errands. There at a table in the middle of a restaurant were a husband and wife and a couple of kids. Their food arrived and before they started to eat they paused to pray.
Dominic and I were both struck by what we saw. I can honestly say I hadn’t seen a family pray in a fast food restaurant before. But they saw the benefit of it and paused to honor God before they ate. As we were leaving we stopped to tell them what an impact it had on us. Oddly enough we ended up seeing them at Sam’s Club just minutes later and ended up talking at length with them.
They were walking out their faith, in real life. Not just behind closed doors where it was comfortable, but out in public where they had the potential to be scrutinized. I wanted a faith like that.
So Dominic and I made a decision that day that we would start being more intentional about prayer. When we go out to eat somewhere, we pause and pray. And here’s the thing, we don’t do it so that we get some jewel on our crown…but what if there is someone watching that needs to be encouraged like we were so many years ago?
What if our intentional acts of faith could make a difference for someone else?
When I think about how dark this world can be at times, it is encouraging to know that people around me still have faith. We have the opportunity to be a light in the darkness, and one way we can do that is through prayer.
So I challenge you today…look at your prayer life currently. Are there things you have avoided just because of fear? Start by praying for God to give you courage and remember that your intentional act of faith could make a big difference in the life of someone you don’t even know!
Lord, I thank you today for that family that made such an impact on us over 10 years ago. Their act of faith inspired us to start being more intentional in our own life. Give me courage Lord to do the same. Help us to look for ways to be a light to those around us. Remove any fear we may be carrying and fill us with a boldnes that only comes from You! In Jesus Name, Amen.