Do we stand before God dressed in our best costume? And is it possible that underneath our flowery words of a proper prayer, what we are actually saying is “Trick or treat?”
I think it’s entirely possible; and I believe it’s something we should all evaluate.
Time and time again I have prayed for God to intervene in my life, for Him to bless, for Him to heal, for Him to save the day and for Him to be my hero. And many of those times, doubt had already tainted my heart. There I still stood, before the throne of God, with a “good little Christian” disguise on, hoping He would be pleased enough with my external appearance that He would be moved to give the treat I was seeking.
But God doesn’t hand out tricks or treats. He only gives out love- pure love that is untainted. Love that is not affected by performance or our exterior, love that only holds good for us.
That truth does not mean, however, that I have never received a trick rather than a treat when I have prayed. I’ve been tricked often- left with feelings that life is unfair or pressed by moments of depression over a seemingly silent God.
Since God does not trick us, what happened in those times? I’ve come to the conclusion that a few different things cause us to feel cheated or tricked.
Flawed theology takes a pliable heart that is hungry for God and twists it until our desire for knowledge and righteousness leave us disillusioned. Anytime we are feeling that God is uncaring, silent or cruel, that’s a warning sign for us to revisit our spiritual foundation. A flawed theology can cause us to pray for things aren’t the best in the long run, and thankfully God loves us enough to say no when necessary.
Earthly perspective focuses our eyes on what is right before us. It works like a microscope, making our field of vision smaller rather than larger. When we pray while looking through a microscope, we will fail to see God moving. An earthly perspective can lead to spiritual blindness.
Sugary sweet lies from the pit of hell will turn our heads faster than anything else, causing us to either feel entitled to blessings or deserving of nothing. Those are extreme feelings and neither one of them is correct. Satan wants us to feel as if our works should result in our prayers being answered a certain way. And he also wants us to feel cornered and conquered by sin, leaving us with no desire to seek God’s favor. But the truth is, God’s favor rests on all who will accept it, regardless of who they are and what they have done.
We should be asking ourselves “trick or treat,” not God. Are we going to allow ourselves to be “tricked” out of a healthy prayer life? Or are we going to kneel before the throne, costumes cast aside, believing that God is consistently good. We can pray with the knowledge that even though this world is contaminated by sin, God has a way of turning even the worst things into a “treat” eventually.
***Have a safe Halloween! Be sure to share this post with all your friends!***