By Brooke Holt
“Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:5-7
The other night at our women’s Bible study, we went around the circle and introduced ourselves by sharing our names and an adjective that described us. To make this experience even more interesting, this descriptive adjective had to begin with the same letter as our names. The introduction exercise was quite easy for me. For my entire life, I have been coined “Babbling Brooke”.
Talking with others (and especially with my dog) comes quite easily and naturally for me. I am proficient in expressing my thoughts, feelings, and desires with my husband, family, and good friends. However, as I read this passage today, I am questioning if I am as bold and straightforward with the Lord as I am with others.
I love the Lord, and I love spending time with him. Every morning, my dog and I head downstairs for a big glass of lemon water and coffee. Then we head back up to my office. Every day begins with the Lord, my beverages and my dog. I read the Scriptures and a devotional book. I use my Prayerful app (a prayer app by Christian Healing Ministries which I highly recommend). I journal and often let my thoughts go in prayer or some kind of Scripture meditation.
All these things are good and so life-giving for me. Yet, I can’t help but wonder if I am bringing the fullness of my requests to the Lord. Why would I hold back? Maybe it is because I know he understands me completely, knows what I need and want, and has a plan for me. While all true, I think more lies beneath my actions. To bring the fullness of my desires to the Lord feels vulnerable. What if he says no? Or even worse, what if he doesn’t answer?
I am so fearful of being dismissed by the Lord that I don’t ask. This fear is indicative of my lack of faith in the character of God. If I truly believe he is sovereign (all-knowing), omnipotent (all-powerful), and good, then why do I allow fear to hinder me? I do believe God is sovereign, omnipotent, and good. Honestly though, sometimes it is easier for me to believe he hears every one of your prayers but might not be quite as concerned about mine.
We all struggle with these fears and insecurities so Paul will continue to provide us instruction for the faithful way forward: “but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God” (Philippians 4:5). That is your invitation today – bring all your requests before the Lord trusting in his goodness, his steadfast love for you, his joy in hearing you, as well as his perfect knowledge and power.
Are you making your requests known to God or are you holding back? What is he inviting you to bring to him in prayer today? Bring it, with thanksgiving, and trust that your heavenly Father hears, cares, and is working on your behalf. We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
Christmas is the festival of rejoicing at Christ’s first coming—the beautiful, unlikely start of our salvation! As the season ends each year, we pack up the decorations. Advent, on the other hand, is a bigger celebration—one we can’t box up and store in the attic. It celebrates the grace of Christ’s first coming, and then it reaches with restless anticipation for the fuller grace of his second appearing and the completion of our salvation! For 28 days, celebrate Advent. In Prepare the Way, join with St. Paul, King David the Psalmist, Zechariah, Gabriel, Mary, Elizabeth, and John the Baptist, along with the crowds as they rejoiced in the good news of Christmas, and then look beyond it for the holiday that never ends!
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