“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits and in His Word I put my hope.” (Psalm 130:5)
We are a people who expect things to happen now. Our TV viewing is oriented to the 22 minute sit-com. Most story lines can be resolved in that much time, with five minutes of commercials in the middle! We like our popcorn microwaved, our wireless signal instantaneous (and uninterrupted by that little swirly icon!), and our coffee brewed in a Keurig. We don’t like delays… in traffic, in response to our INSTANT message, or in the grocery store checkout line. We like short books (notice, they are being released in smaller and smaller sizes?), short sermons (well…), and short waits in ANY line.
And you may be certain that this tendency toward impatience in EVERY arena of life bleeds over into our prayer life. Pray all night? You have to be kidding! Be persistent in prayer? Wait on the Lord? All these concepts are foreign to us in our quick-fix, microwaved, instant messaging culture. How dare God keep ME waiting? Doesn’t He know I have… texting to get back to?? And so, along with our shorter, simpler books and our desire for shorter sermons, and our tendency toward quicker everything… there is the need for quick-fix prayers.
Now in defense, short prayers aren’t always bad… not always a sign of impatience. And the prayers really aren’t the problem. It’s expecting an immediate ANSWER that is the issue. Sometimes God has us wait… and wait… and wait…..and wait… and wait… and even then sometimes He doesn’t answer. I guess there are times that the discipline of waiting not on but WITH the Lord is more important than you getting what you think you need.
Sometimes you just need God. Just Him. Not what He can give you. Just His person, just His presence. Just God. And sometimes when we get prayer right… that’s exactly WHO we get.
And He’s always enough.