Building on Love
The older my children get the less I have to answer the small questions that allow them to get through their day. I don’t want them calling or texting me 20 times a day asking if they can have a snack. The goal in parenting is not that they seek me for permission all day, but to take on the proper mindset and knowledge to make proper decisions.
I was in a conversation with someone who had read my devotional on prayer (if you have not read it check it out). They were encouraged by the devotional to start praying but it didn’t take long before they grew frustrated. I started to realize in the conversation that we needed to look at another aspect of our faith and relationship with the Lord.
I may not want my kids calling me all day for minor things. However, I do want to hear from them, I desire deeper communication, something more than just granting permission. Our relationship with God is that way. Yes, we can present our needs and pray for direction and clarity, but at the same time we need to balance that with the development of our relationship with the Lord. Relationship is about knowing each other and understanding their heart and perspective. Even before I go to prayer about something I am facing, but I know His heart well enough to know how I should respond in the situation until clarity comes.
Jesus was asked once what the most important commandment was and he replied, “The Lord our God is the one and only Lord. And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind and all your strength.” The next was equally important, “Love your neighbor as yourself. No other commandment is greater than these.”
Prayer should be a key part of growing in love with the Lord. If I am praying just to put a check in a check-box, I’m probably not into this with the heart to understand His heart. I am sure my wife would be none to thrilled with me if I just closed my eyes and plugged my ears while I gave her a rundown on my day. When we pray we are to desire to grow in this love, which is the key unlocking all the other aspects of His goodness. From love we find our identity, how to express it, and how to have fresh and new experiences with Him.
So yes, let’s pray and present ourselves to the Lord but don’t grow weary in it. Grow in love. Catch His heart and grow in passion. Let’s love Him, ourselves, and those around us well, as we honor this most important commandment.