I sometimes find myself in the miserable rut of “worry prayers.” What I mean by that is: the tendency to view circumstances from a negative perspective, running ahead of God’s grace for the situation, and lifting up “worry prayers” to the throne rather than faith-driven prayers surrounded by gratitude-filled praises.
The antidote to worry prayers is gratitude prayers.
Watch how this occurs in Psalm 77:
[box]In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord; In the night my hand was stretched out . . . My soul refused to be comforted . . . I am so troubled that I cannot speak . . . Will the Lord reject forever? And will He never be favorable again?[/box]
Has His lovingkindness ceased forever . . .
Has God forgotten to be gracious?
Wow. Sounds like the beginning of a pity-party to me: “God, don’t you care?”
Now, your attitude may not be that depressing and you may not issue such forlorn queries, but can you relate to being in a very dark place and feeling a bit forsaken when no visible changes occur in a situation you’ve prayed over for years? I think we all can.
But I’m thankful the Psalm doesn’t end there. Look at the example we have in turning the corner on worry prayers starting in verse 11:
[box]I shall remember the deeds of the Lord; Surely I will remember Your wonders of old. I will meditate on all Your work and muse on all Your deeds. Your way, O God, is holy; What god is great like our God? You are the God who works wonders . . . [/box]
When we take our eyes off all we’re not seeing God do, and begin thanking Him and proclaiming His goodness for all we have seen Him do–our perspective transforms from worry . . . to praise and gratitude!
I keep a running list of things I’m thankful for in my prayer journal. This record of gratitude guards my heart and mind when circumstances bring dark clouds filled with heavy worry. I want to encourage you today to begin listing God’s wonders; things you can thank Him for as you lift up your prayers.
Join with me in response to this admonition:
[box]I will give thanks to the Lord with all my heart; I will tell of all Your wonders.
I will be glad and exult in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High (Psalm 9:1-2).[/box]
I’d love to hear some things you are grateful for today!
I’ll start by saying: I am grateful for each of you!
(From the archives)