Hello, and happy Friday!
One of our recent interviewees, Brian Heasley, got me thinking about prayer and how my attitude toward the mysterious practice has changed—and how my feelings are still evolving. And that got me thinking about how Christians differ in our views of prayer and our approaches to it. We are certainly no monolith.
So, what are your feelings? Do you believe that God is present in every situation, in every moment, and supremely interested in you? Do you trust that he leans in when you talk to him in the silence—and the chaos? Or, on the other hand, do you imagine he's more of a million-miles-away kind of god? The off-in-heaven type?
Some philosophers and theologians offer a concept called the Watchmaker Analogy. Under this thinking, God long ago spoke this astonishing and intricate universe into being, put it into motion (wound it up like a vintage watch), and promptly set it down. Leaving the cosmos to operate on its own, according to laws, not love.
In all its nuanced versions, the watchmaker view of God is quite common. I think it’s why so many of us today believe in our hearts that God is somewhat indifferent toward us and probably engrossed in more important things. We accept that he exists, that he is somehow essential to our lives (or to life in general), but we don’t believe that a personal relationship with him is possible—certainly not one that’s deep, real, heartfelt, and conversational.
If your conception of God and prayer is anywhere near the watchmaker view (even a little bit), I dare you to give him a chance to show you who he really is. I dare you to open your heart—even slightly—and go to him in prayer and ask him your tough questions. Are you there? Are you listening? Do you care?
If you need a place to start, why not join us at the Wild at Heart Boot Camp 2023?