It is Sunday Morning. A pretty traditional Church day for me. It is on the internet thanks to the pandemic. Before the Internet it was called Church and Family day. There isn’t Church at the building day. The pre-pandemic church day started with a coffee and rolls get together. One then went to the sanctuary for the Message and when done we all went to our favorite Sunday lunch or brunch day.
I got up today and felt lost. The world is changing. What are my expectations when the word PRAYER comes up? What do I plan on doing with that prayer box when I take it off the shelf and remind myself that my faith has a home of sorts. Unorthodox Christianity? My conversation with GOD is centered around something called prayer. When Jesus talked to the disciples it was conversation. When someone wanted healing for a friend or family member, or a neighbor one sought out Jesus to be the healer. A miracle now and then. But this is me, this is now. My prayer box has expectations that come with it. The social club doesn’t need me. What is the purpose of Unorthodox Christianity?
Every day I pray. It may be a breakfast prayer or a dinner prayer. I may have received a special prayer to pray for a member of a church family, a co-worker, it may be a TV prayer as the messenger for any or all of the thousands that have had to confront the Pandemic. I may have a family member challenged by cancer or covid, or health issues whose name surprises me. It may come as an obituary to tell me I am getting older.
It may be for someone whose name I do not know or recognize. We all get the message somehow. For someone. For some purpose. What is it all about?
The world has many tribes. Groups of people who believe alike, in something. There are groups who profess non-belief. Who do they pray to, from whom do they request a loving heart and caring thought?
There are Bibles, there are Sutra’s, there are classes on religion and thousands of churches with billions of believers, believing in something. There are judges to judge right and there are judges to judge wrongs. Who do you pray for, and who do you pray to. You ask for forgiveness and for absolution. I think I admit my wrongs, and I ask for peace.
I may speak in tongues. I ask in long messages or short messages. I have many names for GOD and which Name must I use for which prayer? There are billions of prayers every moment. I ask myself, what do I expect from the prayer? What do I expect GOD to say? What do I expect GOD to do in response. What if I disagree? Will my prayer take precedence over someone elses? Is my prayer honest enough? Is it correct enough? What do I expect from it?
Is my prayer Politically correct enough? Will others who hear my prayer agree with me or not? What if their prayer challenges mine, or disagrees with what I was taught the prayer should be about. Is my prayer like a snowball rolling down a hillside getting bigger as it goes? Does my prayer find me shaking my head back and forth wondering if GOD agrees with me, or not? Are my prayers realistic or are they unrealistic. Do they truly have meaning, or wishes or desires. Are they lost in a cavern of thousands of years ago that sounds like “this person or “That” person wrote it down. Have the conversations become fragments of great thoughts, or confusion?
Just what am I trying to accomplish during my prayer time?
On and on and on. I may take hours and say nothing meaningful, I could be wasting GOD’s time. Is GOD on my side? What do I want to take away from my prayer? Do I want peace, do I want to WIN? What is it I am praying for? Do I want the temperature to be warm for a few days or `below zero’. Is such a prayer frivolous?
Now that I have written a bunch of stuff down, what do I do with it?
I have expectations, don’t I. Do I have any power to have it My Way? Do I even know what my way is? How would GOD hear my prayer? How would GOD accept it or answer it. What are my prayer Expectations?
I want to listen first and pray second. GOD has ways of talking to me when I have questions. Does GOD disagree? Maybe. Does GOD want you to say something specific to come from you? Do you agree?
The conversation you have with GOD is the beginning of your teaching and the door that GOD will open. It is between you and GOD. The challenge is to seek out your answers. Not someone else’s. You have already set your own challenge. That challenge becomes your expectation. Listen to your questions, listen for GOD’s answers.
Life is very much like an old saying, walk a mile in another mans shoes. Your expectations should include your learning. You have to ask to learn. The conversation you begin will last a lifetime. And we call it LIVING. And it starts with expectations.
The internet has created all kinds of questions and presents all kinds of answers. When you punch up Unorthodox Christianity on the Internet what do you expect to find? What sort of a question do you have to answer? The questions and the answers lie within you. They lie within conversations that you may have long forgotten, pictures you may have drawn, music you may have sung. If you are lost will you become found? You and GOD can discover the found. Your Expectations become your challenges. Your challenges become your answers. Your answers become your journey.
Life is meant for living, take your faith off of the shelf.