Are You Praying Popcorn Prayers?

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Is feeling safe and comfortable the goal of the Christian life? Is it the best thing to “pray it safe?”

There have been seasons of life when I only prayed “popcorn prayers.” I popped them up in traffic, in the shower, or as I ran out the door to work. After some of my petitions weren’t answered in the way I had desperately hoped—it was easier not to ask for what I truly desired than to risk disappointment one more time.

Having a shallow prayer life felt safe.

If we struggle with trusting God, praying for what we know only God can accomplish—or for the things we sincerely want—praying can feel dangerous...like our hearts have been stripped bare. Fully engaging in prayer can make us feel vulnerable before Him. To avoid discomfort, we may separate our desires from prayer. So we ask Him only for what hasn’t captured our affections, or for those things we know that He’ll grant. We pray “popcorn prayers.”

Live on the Cliff of Daring Prayer

This brings me to a question: Is feeling safe and comfortable the goal of the Christian life? Is it the best thing to “pray it safe?”

I have to admit, there are times when I want to stand on the edge of prayer, certain that only God can provide what I need, and if He doesn’t, that disaster will be mine. There is something exhilarating about living in total desperation for Him.

Other times, I want to live predictably. I don’t want God to upset the apple cart of my carefully arranged life. Listen up: If we insist on being in control rather than allowing Him to steer our lives, we trade adventure with Him for the mundane, and a vibrant Christian life for comfort. Sure, we get to live in the spiritual safety zone, but there is no abundant internal life in that. To remain fully alive, we have to fully expect from God. Life with Him was meant to be lived by faith so that we can glorify Him. And, living by faith is fulfilling and rewarding, even when it’s not easy.

What About You?

What kind of prayers have you been praying lately? I encourage you to live on the cliff of prayer. Come boldly before His throne with all kinds of prayers and requests (Ephesians 6:18). Don’t stop praying authentic, heart-felt prayers. And remember, the prayer that is never prayed is the one that is never answered.

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