My Friend, Kelly Smith, at Mrs. Disciple brings today an essential and pertinent message about prayer and needing help. I invite you to be refreshed by her sweet words. I know they encouraged me.
I stood by my bed, the folded laundry for my family of five stacked high in front of me. Three laundry baskets of wrinkled clothes sat waiting by my feet. This was a particularly busy season in life; the housework had moved down on the priority list.
My husband, in an act of chivalry, offered some advice. “If you need help, just ask and we can all pitch in.” Don’t you just love that kind of advice, ladies?
I bristled. Help? Nope. Not me. I can do it. I can do it ALL.
I’d like to say this is the only time his offer to help during my time of need was met with resistance. I am afraid it is a pattern. It is a lifestyle for me. I wear my ability to do all the things proudly like a tiara. I am the queen of get it done. I hold on to my royal status and defend it fiercely.
As with many of my personality quirks, my get-it-done mentality leaks over into my spiritual life. I have resolve and determination which essentially eliminates my need to pray.
Why ask for help when I can do it myself?
I am not a very good at prayer. Prayer feels like weakness. To ask God to intervene on my behalf is to admit I am incapable of handling life. Relying on the power of God indicates vulnerability. If I need Him to be my strength, this means I am weak.
Stop for just a minute and re-read that last paragraph. Do you see the ridiculousness of my thought pattern? Maybe you can relate.
Sisters, we are in good company. Paul must have struggled with the same sort of thing. In his second letter to the Corinthians, he shares the lessons learned from his weaknesses (2 Corinthians 12:5-10). God met Paul as he knelt beneath the weight of his own weakness.
But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. (1 Cor 12:9, emphasis added)
Boast in weakness? This is a reversal of my tendency to take pride in my own strength. Kingdom living is upside down living. While I want to proudly wear my tiara of competency, Christ asks me to lay it at His feet. When I want to walk my own way on my own two feet, He wants to carry me to higher places.
My issue with prayer is an issue with pride. I am too proud to pray. I need to lay down my tiara. I need to admit I am not the queen of get it done; I am simply a servant of the King.
I do not expect my 2-year-old son to tie his own shoes. He fights me on it, pulling the strings away so he can try. His attempt is just as ridiculous as my desire to do life apart from prayer.
Can we lay down the tiara today? Can we get low and ask for help?
Lord, You are my strength. I cannot do life without You. I lay all that is good and strong within me at Your feet. Be my strength today. Carry me where You want me to go. Fill in the gaps and make Your power perfect in my weakness.
Kelly Smith is a small town girl who married a small town man 17 years ago. She has three energetic blessings, ages 1 to 11. Her favorite indulgences are coffee, reading, writing, and running. Kelly believes we are created for community and loves to find ways to connect with other women who are walking in the shadow of the cross. She blogs at mrsdisciple.com.