Saturday, October 5, 2013

Day 6: Details


     Ever had one of those days?  Ever had one of those weeks?  You know where your prayers are more like “Honey do lists,” flung up to God. “Lord, let my car start.”  “Father, can I just make that traffic light, I’m already late.”  “Lord, please let this child sleep through the night, I’m so tired.”  “God help my son understand his fraction homework.”  "Oh Lord, please help me to straighten out this mess."  I’m sure that you’ve prayed one or more of these prayers on occasion.
     Not all of the time, but sometimes, my prayers are just about me, my life, my family, my home, and what I deem to be important at that very moment.  I know that there are much bigger problems in this world than the minutia of my day, but I feel better when I tell God what I need, even when it’s silly or trivial.
     I am not saying that we can skate by on missing worship, sitting in God’s presence, fellowship, or Bible reading.  I’m just sharing that I often have a conversation with God in my head which is not necessarily spiritual.
     I was reading in 2 Kings recently and came across the passage about a floating iron axe head. This takes place right after Elisha has healed Naaman of leprosy and right before Israel’s army is delivered from the Arameans.  Elisha and Naaman were important men and the war was certainly an important event.  But the floating axe was really only important to one unnamed man who found himself in a bit of a mess.
     The men who were following Elisha were cutting trees by the Jordan River to build larger quarters to accommodate their growing numbers. One of the men broke the top of his axe handle and the iron axe head fell into the river. He couldn’t work and to make matters even worse, the axe had been borrowed. When Elisha heard the man cry out he asked him where the axe head had fallen into the river.  The man showed Elisha the place. Elisha cut a stick, threw it into the water, and the iron axe head floated right up to the top where the man could reach down and pick it up.
     The man was obviously not a big, important person like Naaman, after all we don’t even know his name.  He didn’t even have enough money to buy his own ax, but had to borrow one. He also wasn’t performing some big, important task like fighting in Israel’s army.  But he was doing what God had called him to do – building a home so that God’s Word and work could be furthered.
     As we go about our every day lives in our kitchens, going to work and school, we sometimes don’t feel we are important or that we are accomplishing anything important.  But we are. We are building God’s kingdom in our little corner of the world.  And God cares about the details. He wants to hear our little prayers. He cares about our worries and concerns.
 Cast the whole of your care, all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.     ~ 1 Peter 5:7 (The Amplified Bible)
     Many times God will use our trivial little prayers and the answers He gives us to teach us about Himself and His purposes for us. All we need to do is ask for the lesson in the midst of the mess we find ourselves.  God will use our everyday life circumstances to draw us to Him, to build our faith and ultimately change us into His likeness.
     The next time you feel your prayer or need is silly or unimportant; remember the floating axe head and that God cares about the details of your life.
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