Day 51 – Whatever Works
Brother Lawrence wrote that “we can continue our loving exchange with him [God], remaining in his holy presence sometimes by an act of adoration, praise, or desire, other times by acts of oblation, thanksgiving, or anything else that our minds can devise.”
As Brother Lawrence practices the presence of God, he does so with a holy freedom and without a legalistic spirit. He chooses to remain in God’s presence continually, and when he finds himself drawn away from God, he merely returns again.
Without a specific formula or rules to follow, he uses many ways of prayer to bring him closer to God – adoration, praise, desire, surrender, thanksgiving – whatever works.
Consider the variety of ways we pray.
Verbalizing thoughts to God in straightforward way. Singing along with a worship song. Listening to God in quietness. Following a specific prayer plan. Praying through a prayer list. Conversing with God without any structured order. Interceding for friends and family. Lifting up short prayers. Praying Scripture. Using written prayers. Contemplating God through his Word. Gazing upon God’s majesty.
Perhaps you’ve noticed that you pray differently on different occasions and in different seasons of life. And you may find yourself praying in a particular pattern for a few days or weeks or months, and then you’ll switch to a different pattern or style or type of prayer.
What changed? You did. Your circumstances did. As in any relationship, you are growing in your relationship with God.
Prayer is a multifaceted jewel. You come to God by yourself or with others.
Sometimes you turn your Bible reading into prayer. Sometimes you wait on the Lord in silence. Sometimes you blurt out a few words. Sometimes you give a shout of praise.
Sometimes you pray sitting or kneeling, standing or walking, with hands lifted or feet dancing.
In church, at home, at work, on the subway, in the outdoors, you express your adoration, praise, desire, surrender, thanksgiving to God.
You may wonder, Do all these ways of prayer count? Brother Lawrence would give a resounding, “Yes! They all count!”
What Brother Lawrence learned long ago about prayer – whatever works.
Action Step: Explore a different way to pray than your usual.
This is God’s Word for you today,