PRAISE & PRAYER PROMPT ••• Good way-too-early-o’clock. I am writing on about four hours of sleep after going to bed at 12:30 this morning with a migraine. Headache is gone but I am operating way outside my norm.
I went to bed with something pretty heavy on my mind and woke up with it too, so I’m writing this before I do anything else. I hope it makes sense… I’m writing it for me as much as for anyone else who needs to hear it.
Have you ever thought about how one-sided our conversations with God are? It’s all about “me.” Do this for “me” with an occasional “do-this-for-them” thrown into the mix. How often do we stop and let Jesus talk? Or how often do we stop and reflect on the holiness of God when we pray?
If you’re like me, sometimes it’s easier to jump into a me-focused prayer without first acknowledging God’s holiness. I have to be diligent about it, and (ironically), I have to pray for the Holy Spirit to remind me to put Him first in my prayers. I am really working on changing this in my prayer life.
It’s not that I never think of Him. Actually, I think of God a lot. But a lot of what I think about is what He did for me and less about who He is. And there is nothing wrong with thinking about what He did for us. What He did for us is incredible and worth our reflection… but when I shift my focus a little and first focus on who He is, it makes me stand a little more in awe of His greatness, power, goodness, and love when I switch gears back to thinking about what He did for me. Did that make sense (again, running low on zzz’s)?? Summation: instead of me-first, make it Him-first, then what-He-did-for-me.
So much of our culture—including our Christian culture—is me-focused. I love Christian worship music and listen to it all the time, but it really hit me in a new way last night… I was working on a spreadsheet and had K-LOVE playing. They were playing Christian music from 1979. I admit I wasn’t as familiar with most of those songs (though cut me some slack—I was five when they came out). But what hit me was how God-focused the lyrics were.
A lot of our Christian music today focuses on how God feels about us. And they are accurate lyrics. I’m not criticizing our current Christian music; I love it. I play it all the time. But it’s not all about what God says about us—we’ve got to think about what God says about Himself.
Revelation 5:12 ESV says, “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!” Jesus is worthy of our full attention. And giving someone our full attention means getting out of our me-mentality and putting them first. And no one is more worthy of being first in our lives than Jesus! He is the worthy Lamb and deserving of our focus.
It’s something to think about. He’s given us any number of ways to reflect on who He is—His divinity. His creativity. His power. His majesty. His holiness. His consistency. His faithfulness. His goodness. His greatness. His might. His love. His perfection. His humility. His kindness. His patience. His sincerity. His trustworthiness. His compassion. This is just a mere sliver of who God is. Pick one quality a day to focus on then, keep adding to the list.
That’s a prayer exercise I’m starting today. I’m taking this list and adding it to my prayer journal as “Attributes of God” so I can focus on one per day before I turn to my prayer list.
At the beginning of this, I talked about one-sided conversations. To wrap this up, one last thing to think about… How valued would you feel if every conversation with your best friend was all about them? How important would you feel if all your best friend did was talk about you could do for them? How significant would you feel if your best friend never asked about you?
Jesus is the best friend we could ever have. Let’s spend some time focused on that. Let’s give Him some time to talk to us too. Let’s make sure we tell Him how important He is to us and indeed, how worthy He is “to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!”
Today, as you pray, thank Jesus for being the Worthy Lamb who was slain. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you reflect on who God is before you think about anything else. Ask Him to help you be more God-focused than you are me-focused.