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God is Not a Marionette(Part 2)

Ever wished you knew how to pray better? If we're honest, the question might be better worded as this. Ever wished you knew how to get God to do what you want? This question arises in light of painful circumstances, hope for loved ones and big dreams.

Would it surprise you as a Jesus-follower to learn that he only did what he saw the Father doing and only said what he heard the Father say?(John 5:19 NIV) Say what? He had no say over what he was doing for the day? Yet Jesus spent hours in prayer, saturating Himself in communion with his Father in preparation for the day ahead. He valued what His Father had to say above all else.(You see that echoed throughout the gospel of John) Do we?

Paul challenges us in Phillipians 2:5-8 to have the very same attitude as Jesus did.

"Who being in very nature God,

did not consider equality with God

something to be grasped,

but made himself nothing,

taking the very nature of a servant,

being made in human likeness.

And being found in appearance

as a man,

he humbled himself

and became obedient to death--

even death on a cross!"(Phil. 2: 6-8)

In the beginning, Adam and Eve walked with God. They had daily fellowship with him. Doing their own thing, listening to another voice in the garden, broke that sweet relationship. He had them convinced that intimacy with God was not enough. He said they could be more if they had knowledge of good and evil. God was holding out on them. Sometimes we feel like God is holding out on us, so we strive to do more, perform better, in order to manipulate him to be on our side. When in reality, he wants to have us lean on Him, cast all our cares and worries on him. Faith is simply putting our full weight of trust on Him and leaning on what God said. Nothing we do can make Him love us more or less.

Do we pray desperate prayers? Yes. Does he answer in ways we cannot fathom? Yes. Is he God? Yes. Then how do I respond? God, when you speak, anything can happen. Worlds are created, limbs made new, scars disappear, conception occurs, deliverance brings freedom. blind eyes see, deaf ears hear. Help me listen. Then help me act on those words and speak what You speak and do what You do.

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