“I started talking to God when I was hidden and hungry, and found the key that unlocks the deepest joy of any life: secret prayer. Whispers with God.”- Sara Hagerty
Sara Hagerty begins Chapter 12 (“Holy Whispers: Embracing the Mysteries of God”) of Unseen as she states her faith hinges upon prayer. Through the Holy Spirit, God’s Word becomes her dialogue with God. Unless God directly informs the gospel, it fails to spread from our heart to our hands.
However, Ms. Hagerty concludes, anyone who wants to fall in love with God faces a great threat. That greatest threat?- familiarity. Thus, familiarity puts us at risk of missing Jesus or failing to see who He really is. That’s because attach our thoughts to the safe things we think we already understand about Jesus.
Writing in Answering God (1989), Pastor Eugene Peterson states the following. Left to our own devices, we’ll pray to some god who tells us what we want to hear. Or, we’ll pray to a part of God we manage to understand. Sara explains it this way:
“We allow ourselves to be lulled into a dull familiarity with the parts of Jesus we’ve experienced, the passages in His Word we’ve studied the most, the truths about Him we can explain and understand. Then, we string all of these familiar things together and call them God. . . . instead of being alert for how the truth of how He really is will likely expand our human understanding, we end up watching for confirmation of what we already know.”
As a result, prayer becomes stale. But God walks us back to prayer’s simple accessibility. With prayer as the hinge of our relationship with Him, He invites us to pray like wide-eyed children.
Today’s question: What prayers unlock the deepest joy in you? Please share.
Coming Monday: the latest Short Meditation, “An inverted sense of measurement”
Tomorrow’s blog: “Lean into hiddenness with God”