I have been really enjoying our Friday night book club discussion. One of the ongoing themes in the book "Fresh Wind, Fresh Fire" is the value of prayer. The author was sharing in Chapter 5 that he saw God do so much more in 10 minutes of prayer than in 10 sermons. He also reminded us of how God birthed the church in a prayer meeting.
As I reflect on my prayer life, I realize I tend to turn to prayer only when I need something (interviewing for a new job, getting over a sickness, wanting rush hour traffic to end, etc.). Now there is nothing wrong with asking God for needs that we have. However, the temptation to that is to treat God as if He is our personal genie that we can just go to Him for our wishes to come true. When I reflect on my life, there are many times that I grew in my faith when God said "no" to some of my requests. The reality is that prayer is not to be treated like a vending machine where one deposits a prayer and in return God will grant you that wish.
I realize and am reminded more and more how prayer is a time to connect with God. I make it an effort to add in my prayer life: 1) prayer of gratitude and acknowledgement of who God is and His character; 2) prayer of confession so that I am not held back by the sins I have done and repentance to move away from my selfish desires and towards God's will.
I was deeply disturbed and saddened by what happened to George Floyd. I am deeply angered that racism is still going on and it breaks my heart that we have lost lives because of it. Reality hits and we live in a broken, fallen world full of sin. As I spent time praying against racism and the brokenness of the world, I was drawn to Romans 3:22-24 that we are set free from sin and redeemed through Christ alone and justified by His grace and not by works we have done. I thank God for sending his Son Jesus Christ for dying on the cross for us. The Gospel showed that Jesus did great works to bring unity, to rebuke racism, and to bring justice and I thank him for that. God's promise is not material things of this world, His promise is sending His Son Jesus Christ as the Savior to this broken world.