13 April 2013 by Natasha Kim CM –
“I started the journey of prayer and found that prayer is my way of starting to see the world differently” said Yancey. Advertisements in the media portray what they want us to follow and tell us this is what matters. They tell us how much money we should have, how we should look and how we should live. Many people are easily bought by their schemes of making money.
However, Jesus says that it’s those who mourn, those who are persecuted, those who are poor who is blessed, not the “gleeful looking” one for whom everything works out. Then there are other people who feel low and are poor in spirit, and Jesus says blessed are the poor in spirit.
The world keeps shooting messages at us to tempt us but prayer corrects our vision so we start seeing the world the way God sees it. “It’s very different from how I would normally see it. It’s like getting a new set of glasses to see how God sees the world.”
Yancey used to go to prayer meetings to watch how different people pray. He observed that so many of those prayers he heard were prayers of desperation and of help. He found it very interesting observing how different people pray. He’s heard prayers like “Oh Lord I’m so lonely, if only I could get a husband all my problems would be solved” while some others would pray asking, “Oh Lord If only I could get rid of my husband everything would be solved”. Yet prayer is seeing that world in different eyes, seeing that maybe God doesn’t want you to get rid of that husband, that maybe He wants to do some work in you and your husband so you learn how to get along and love each other.
Remember that it is God who is in control
Yancey then started talking about the time he and his family moved out of Chicago and moved to Colorado because of the nature there. “My Thanks! Thanks! Thanks! prayers are usually in beautiful natural surroundings” he shared.
He brought up some interesting facts, that Colorado is filled with mountains. In fact, 700 of them reach up to about 13,000 feet while 54 of them reach up to 14,000 feet high and more (14-ners is what they call them) . One day, a friend of Yancey invited him and his wife to climb one of those large mountains. Coming from the city they learned mountain climbing was what “macho” Coloradans do. If they wanted to be true Coloradans they would have to climb all the 54 mountains! During the course of their stay there both of them started climbing those mountains. Slowly but surely Yancey almost reached his goal of climbing all of them until the year 2007 where he met with a car accident.
Yanceys car went over a cliff and turned over five different times. Fortunately for him it landed right side up but the car was crushed. He was critically injured and was close to death! But he managed to recover well and complete his goal of climbing all 54 of Colorado’s 14,000 feet plus peaks that same year!
“During that time, I was working on this book on prayer and I found that it’s a good combination, climbing mountains and thinking about prayer…For one thing you’re closer to God and there are times where that Help! Help! Help! prayer very strong ” shared Yancey. He learnt a lot about prayer during that time. There were times were the trails got dangerous and frightening and there was always worry about whether there was a storm coming their way.
During his time climbing he had experienced looking down from thousands of feet above at what looked like coloured dots, which he later realised were people. They obviously woke up late and if they didn’t make it to the peak in time they would be danger of a storm coming and them being struck by lightning. They were tiny and vulnerable.
Later it dawned on Yancey that he was the little dot he saw from up the mountain. That he was so concerned about his little world that he had no idea what’s going on. “For just a moment I got a glimpse of the “God’s eye view”.
Be careful about what you pray for
“There are a lot of prayers in the Bible but there’s one book of prayers that people don’t think of and that’s the book of Job.” shared Yancey. Now, Job was righteous but he experienced a lot of disaster. He used to complain a lot! “It was if Job was telling God, “You don’t know what you’re doing, you don’t know how to run the world!”
Yancey observed that a lot of the prayers in the Bible are actually prayers of complaint. Two out of every three Psalms are Psalms of complaint. As Job kept continuously complaining he finally got his prayer answered. “God appeared to Job out of a whirlwind and it was the longest speech by God in the entire Bible. If God speaks that long it’s worth paying attention to!”
At the end God appears as if saying, “Let’s compare resumes! While you’ve been complaining let me tell you what I’ve been up to, and then He explained what it is like to run the universe” He gave Job a tour of the natural world.
After seeing things in Gods point of view, Job listens and immediately repents. According to Job, he said “Surely I spoke of things I did not understand, things too wonderful for me to know……Therefore I despise myself and repent in dust and ashes.”
This shows that you’ve really got to be careful about what you pray for. The message that God was trying to tell Job he shouldn’t try to run the universe. That’s God’s job to do. Job just needed to trust in God and realise that He knows what he is doing, whether it looks like it or not. The moral of the story, is that we need to learn to let God take control of our lives, even our prayer life. Trust in Him!
Psalm 46: 2 – 10 – 2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, 3 though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. "Selah" 4There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God, the holy place where the Most High dwells. 5 God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day. 6 Nations are in uproar, kingdoms fall; he lifts his voice, the earth melts. 7 The LORD Almighty is with us; the God of Jacob is our fortress. "Selah" 8 Come and see the works of the LORD, the desolations he has brought on the earth. 9 He makes wars cease to the ends of the earth; he breaks the bow and shatters the spear, he burns the shields with fire. 10 "Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth."
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