Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Great Expectations

I've been participating in a Bible discussion group for the past couple of weeks with a few of my favorite people--people whose faith I admire and desire to emulate as a believer myself. All for different reasons, I see such a strength in each of them that I long to have myself, so it has been awesome for me to listen in, interpret, chew on, and even throw in my own thoughts. One of the things we are encouraging is "asking the hard questions of the faith". I love that and it has led to some great personal dialogue with the Lord. Here are a few thoughts from my mind trying to wrap around some of these concepts that theologians have fought over for centuries (yeah, I know...I don't think our little group expects to figure it out, just voice it all :oP )

From my journal last week (regarding the topic of praying specifically vs. generally):
"I enjoyed our Bible discussion and I admitted to fearing the thought of asking the hard questions of faith in fear that if I get no answer from You, Lord, my disappointment will be greater because I expected of you. If I expect nothing [meaning I wasn't in line with God's will for a situation], and I get nothing, then I am not surprised. If I get something, it is a blessing from You. It is hard to argue with You and yet speak to You in the proper "You-owe-me-no-answers-at-all" attitude. Can I do both?

Prayer for me looks a little like this math formula at times:
expect nothing + get nothing=no surprise
expect nothing + get something (in line with the will of God for a situation)=blessing
expect something + get nothing=disappointment
expect something + get something=lucky break that I tapped into the will of God for that
So, pray specifically or gloss-over-general?"

Anybody else feel this way at times?