Monday, August 2, 2010

Prayer Changes... Me!

Have you ever been sick?  Like, down-for-the-count for more than a day or so, sick.  For a Type A personality, it doesn't get much worse than that.  In fact, when I get back in the saddle again, I'm worse.  I fly through the house on a cleaning frenzy 1) because I feel as if there are all kinds of germs just lurking there, trying to get me or my family again, 2) because I haven't had my hands in anything for a day or so -- it's a way of getting back my control over my responsibilities with a fresh, clean start, and 3) because, compared to how I was feeling, "I'm on top o' the world, Ma!" 

In Psalm 6, I get that from David.  He is at a low point.  He should be -- he committed adultery with Bathsheba and had her husband killed.  What's worse than catching a cold?  Not eating or sleeping properly, kissing on your dog, standing at the bus stop with wet hair -- asking for it; David asked for it and later, regretted it.  At the start of Psalm 6, he is sick with grief; he has cried, he has ached, he has groaned in his repentance and yet, he is still troubled.  He begs for relief.  Three stanzas later, it comes.  Now did this process really take only a matter of minutes, of written words?  Doubtful.  But the point is, David felt renewed, back on top, but not because of his efforts (He'd already found his plan was a debacle), but because THE LORD had heard his prayer, THE LORD was on his side.

Looking at the nature of David's condition in the first place, we can see that the Lord had never left David's side, but David had left Him.  Nevertheless, God in His infinite mercy and grace has provided a way for David to feel renewed and restored again -- prayer.  We know that God forgives, we know He sent His Son, Jesus to stand in the gap for us and suffer our punishment, but as sensual ("sensual" as in relating to the senses) flesh he knew our need to feel that union, to feel that oneness with Him.  Just as David, through prayer had experienced that reunion with His Heavenly Father, prayer restores us today, to a place of oneness with Him.  Prayer is not only our way to truly communicate our sorrow for sin, our need for forgiveness, our desire for God to heal or change lives, but it is a way to reach up, grab His extended hand, and once again, walk with Him as we should have been.  
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