Unhappy Admission

Some of you know that one of my hobbies—some say that it borders on obsession—is involvement with a great little community of (mostly) Christians that’s formed around two artists: Caedmon’s Call and Derek Webb. We use a little discussion board, the Rumor Forum, as a place to hang out and all that.

Well, one of the things that we have on our forum is a Prayer Board. As stated, the group is predominantly Christian, so this is to be expected. Christian community likes community intercessory prayer, even if we can’t come to an understanding or a shared belief on what said intercessory prayer really does. In the last couple of weeks, I’ve found myself groaning when I see new posts there, and I can’t place an answer on why.

The sad thing is, one of our members just had her grandfather die, and the manner in which he died and other things reminded me of when my own grandfather had passed a little over a year ago. My heart goes out to her, but right now, everything else is left pretty … cold, I guess.

I’m not happy with that, and I know that the only “things” that I can do to fix my attitude are to recognize that it’s wrong and to pray for forgiveness and seek repentance … all of which truly is an admission that I don’t have it in me to do any of it on my own, when you can step back from the dogma and the doctrine to see what I’m really saying as I piteously wail from the depths I’ve dug for myself.

Even as I am dismayed at all this, I rejoice in the blessing of having a Savior on Whom I can lean in these troubled times, and upon whom I should always be leaning. There is a better Way, and it comes through denial of my own selfishness, which I’ll never really complete but can hope for great progress in, not that it makes me a better person, but that it gives glory to God for His ability to redeem the lost.


  1. I too have a problem with this at church. I can’t stay after dinner on Wednesday nights because it is “prayer meeting” because it often feels like an opressively heavy laundry list of stuff that’s gone wrong for people. I try very hard to feel sympathy for those in need but often, as you say, I just feel cold.

    In part I feel helpless but also I feel like people should just get their acts together. Which is pretty much impossible in situations where it is a health issue or an accident. I think then what it boils down for me is a pride issue. I think to myself, I have my stuff under control why can’t these other people? Which, of course, isn’t true. It may look like on the outside that I have my stuff together but if I do, it’s only by the grace of God.

    And in my heart of hearts I know that at prayer meeting that’s what people are seeking, the grace of God. That’s what I have to remember. That all of church isn’t the uplifting or even the learning times it’s also bearing each other’s burdens. I think I need for JC to work on that in me…

    There’s my confession for the week.

  2. The other thing I think we miss is asking for God to change us rather than our situation. I seldom remember to ask God, “What am I to learn from this? How should I be living differently?” When prayer concerns are solicited, why don’t I say, “I have trouble getting impatient with people at work; pray that I might call on God’s patience.”

  3. I think the asking God to change me is where I stumble a lot. I always want the situation to change or even better, go away. Anyway you guys know I’m great and don’t need to change. Yeah, right.

    Also, I feel overwhelmed by the shear number of concerns at places like prayer meeting (we get an email list and it just goes on and on and on). I know it’s not my job to DO anything about it but there’s just so much need out there. I don’t know how to pray for all of that. Am I supposed to pray for each individually? Do I pray for them as the spirit moves me? Do I read them all and then just ask God to remember them all and do what He will in each situation? Needless to say, I’m not much of a prayer warrior.

    It depresses me. The cycle of it depresses me. There’s a lot of need, I need to pray, don’t know how to accomplish the prayer, so therefore don’t pray, I feel guilty for not praying, oh look! there’s even more need out there, repeat. You see how it goes for me. It also makes me wonder how JC felt in the face of the masses trying to get close to Him. Did he feel oppressed by all of their need sometimes?

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