Prayer and the Christian Writer

I’ve done a number of posts at least tangentially on the subject of prayer, but never one specific to writers.

Because in the last post I talked about fear that writers deal with, it seems appropriate to talk about prayer next. Of course, we must remember what prayer is NOT.

  • It is not a means of manipulating God to do what I want.
  • It is not a means of cashing in on God’s promises (put in my prayer and in a few days God’s answer comes via Express Mail).
  • It is not wishful thinking.

Instead, prayer for the Christian is first and foremost communication with our Creator God who loves us. He who by His omniscience knows my thoughts better than I do still wants to hear from me. In fact He has commanded that I pray.

Prayer involves the Trinity. I am to bring my requests to the Father in the Son’s name by the intercession of the Holy Spirit.

Prayer necessitates my searching out God’s will and aligning my heart accordingly.

Prayer can include requests for my needs, even my physical needs, but God can do much more than what I ask or think.

So what does this have to do with the Christian writer? I tend to think that the things we writers fear are not the things we pray about. Too often we believe that we should handle the problems within our reach … apart from God.

Perhaps we never say “apart from God,” but our small prayers about improving our writing skills, getting an agent or a contract, finishing projects on time, completing edit changes, and so on would indicate we aren’t heartily relying on God for these things that cause us to be anxious.

But what happens when we pray for a contract and one doesn’t come? Has God let us down?

Let me ask this, When Jesus prayed that the “cup” of crucifixion pass from Him, and God said no, was that a failure on God’s part?

Clearly not. Jesus didn’t “get what He wanted” … except He did. He finished His request with, Not my will but Yours be done. And the Father’s will WAS done.

Can I look at my writing the same way? This is what I’d like to see for my work, God, but do with it what pleases You. Bring the agent you want me to have; the contract you know would be best; the readers you want to touch through my writing; the opportunities to promote in a way that will glorify You, not me.

The more I learn about God and about prayer, the more I tend to think I am only whispering requests for a few of the “biggies” when He wants me to boldly call out loud regarding anything I’m concerned about.

And here’s the incredible thing. He usually does expect us to do what lies within our grasp to do.

So what does prayer change? Me. No longer am I doing what I can do in my strength. I’m trusting in God, relying on Him, and consequently giving Him the praise.

Published in: on August 6, 2010 at 9:27 am  Comments (4)  
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