[Another post from ~]

My wrestle with God is about how I find it difficult to do the one thing he asks me to do; Spend time with Him.

There are no doubt many reasons for my neglect of God but I just don’t know where one is expected to find the time. And I don’t even have kids!

My fairly limited understanding of my situation is that if I don’t attempt to involve God in my daily activities then I don’t let him get involved much with my life. The biggest problem I have with this is that God is offensive or I’m too proud.

So now I have a problem different from the one I initially started with. But let me try to get back to the issue of time. I guess I want to enjoy spending time with God. This means I would want to spend time with Him. What I find is that it is very hard to talk/love/walk with someone who does not respond in human ways. More over as I get older in my faith I find myself making more decisions without God and involving him less in my day to day life.

So is this the biblical way? Am I supposed to be given less support and more responsibility over time by the Almighty God? Where is the helpline when you want to call up and check that you are still in favour? Where do you go to find time with an invisible God? More importantly where can I find time to actually wrestle with Him?

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  1. Over Christmas, I skimmed through my diaries from the past 10 years, and one thing I noticed was that I always felt I wasn’t praying enough, that I wanted to ‘sort out my prayer life’, but nothing’s changed at all.

    Meanwhile, people tell you about how your life should be built on prayer, how Jesus would get up while it was still dark to pray, how Luther et al would spend hours in prayer, and they say things like ‘Going a day without praying to God is like not speaking to your wife all day’. Do I have doubts and struggle with my faith and my life? That’s because I’m not praying enough. ‘You don’t get because you don’t ask.’ I find time to watch TV, so why don’t I read the Bible and pray instead?

    But all this has done is make me feel guilty and bad – not only is my life difficult, but it’s my fault for not praying like proper Christians do, and I’ve got the luxury of spare time that other people don’t, so I must be wasting it.

    I wonder though – maybe these famous pray-ers were specially gifted at praying as well as at doing the things for God that made them famous. Who’s to say that all the other millions of Christians have had hour-long prayer sessions every day? I think most of us are called to a life more ordinary.

    Maybe it’s more important that we bring God to mind throughout the day, to quickly remember who we’re living for as we go about our daily lives, to be open to Him to guide us, so that we have the right attitude to people and work and the world. Maybe this is what Paul meant by ‘pray continually’. Just as when you’re with a good friend, you don’t need to talk all the time to be in relationship with them. (Enjoy the silence, as Depeche Mode said.)

    On the other hand, I still think I shouldn’t give up trying to carve out time just to focus on God alone, and ask Him about specific things, and wrestle with my instinct to take what looks like an easier option and watch TV or go online instead.

    In practice, I pray mostly when I’m on the train to work, as I can do it even when I’m squashed against the door or jammed between the elbows of newspaper readers, and I’m usually feeling I need to ask God to help me cope with the day ahead. I don’t think God values that time any less. I need to make sure I don’t just pray for myself all the time tho.

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