FIRST Thoughts

Conversation is an important part of the human experience. It is also critical for a healthy spiritual relationship with Christ. Whether in human relationships or heavenly ones, when communication is ignored, trouble soon follows. Relationships on earth begin to cool with the lack of communication and the same thing occurs in our relationship with Jesus when we no longer 'have a little talk with Jesus.' It's not that our love for either is just switched off. We just grow apart and become more distant from each other and from God.

When we fail to spend quality, unhurried time in conversational prayer with our Redeemer, the fire in the heart begins to dwindle to little more than warm coals. Heat remains but it is hardly noticeable to anyone, including the one in whom the fire once burned more intensely.

In our conversation of prayer with God, we must approach Him with a willingness to be transparent in sharing our fears, our failures as well as our victories. This keeps the fire of passion for His purpose burning and impurity from collecting.

I've stated before that God is more willing to hear than many are willing to communicate consistently with Him. An ongoing dialogue with your Creator and Redeemer will go a long way in sustaining your joy and your life. It will also help you and me to avoid a distant relationship.

It's been said, "If we only pray when we are in trouble, we are in trouble." Yet that describes the personal patterns of many religious minded people today. It seems many do many things religiously except join in conversation with God.

When prayer focuses on a laundry list of wants and desires, discouragement will soon fill our heart should our 'prayers' are not answered to our liking. Consequently, we humans tend to default to doing things our own way in our own strength in our own time. And that attitude only reveals that we are no longer as close to God as we once were. Though 'the two' are still one in Christ, there is little if any real joy and excitement experienced within the relationship. Truth is, that describes many marriages today as well as a lot of personal ministry opportunities.

Does God answer prayer? Absolutely! Does God answer prayer immediately? Not often. So, why pray? The answer is simple; because. If for no other reason, conversation with God is important for a vibrant, victorious relationship of faith.

This may come as a shock to some, but God doesn't want us to pray for the purpose of getting our will done in heaven. God wants us to pray so that we might draw nearer to Him and get His will done on earth. That remains the goal of conversation with our Lord. And our relationships, whether secular or spiritual, will be better for it.

Would an honest evaluation of your relationship with Christ reveal that you are close to Him or distant from Him today? The good news is that if you are close, He invites you and me to draw closer through continuing conversation.

If you are distant, the Lord invites you to join Him once more. If you will respond to His invitation to come near, you will experience less trouble and enjoy greater fulfillment in life.

There is never a bad time to begin what is most important. There is never a good time to start doing your own thing!

May we all finish well what He began in us,

Pstr K

Psalm 27:1