I love receiving unexpected wisdom and understanding from the Lord – even if it does come at 2:50ish in the morning and I was planning on getting my work day started at 8. Hey. He is God! I’m on His schedule, not the other way around. (2 Peter 3:8).
“Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.” (Galatians 6:7 NKJV) I must have read/heard this verse a thousand times and it wasn’t until now that my understanding of it changed. I’ve always considered it from the perspective of sowing the bad things you reap. “For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption… (Galatians 6:8 NKJV). You rob a bank (sow), you get caught and go to jail (reap). You ignore someone in need (sow), no one comes to your rescue when you’re seeking help (reap).
God’s revelation (and most times they come without the fanfare of biblical times. He simply places it in front of you quietly and says “meditate on this.”) came as conviction to how I’ve been treating my prayer life lately. With the best of intentions (no I don’t believe in that road to hell sentiment because I have yet to see it in the bible), I have been making a conscious effort to spend at least an hour a day in prayer. This stems from my church’s bible study series a few months ago about the importance and power of prayer and the practical steps for incorporating it into our daily lives for a much richer walk with Christ to help us mature in our faith. The hour stems from Matthew 26:40 when Jesus, who was preparing for his fate of being crucified in payment for our sins, asked His disciples to pray and keep watch with Him. Each time He came back from his prayer place, He found them sleeping. His question to them was “Could you not watch with Me one hour?”
This same question is the foundation for Dick Eastman’s The Hour That Changes the World: A Practical Plan for Personal Prayer about the significant difference that spending time in prayer one hour a day can make. So, armed with a heart wanting to please God, I charged ahead with my plan to spend time in prayer an hour daily. An incredible change from the maybe one hour per week I used to spend. I share this last bit with you because one of the things I’ve struggled (continue to struggle?) with in my walk with Christ is my prayer life. He’s convicted me of it many times (as He did early this morning) and has worked to correct my ways. Because I’m human (Matthew 26:41), His correction is sometimes lost to my earthly desires – this has been the case these past few weeks.
I wasn’t praying enough (not good behavior for a God-fearing Christian), He convicted me of it (by showing me that was unacceptable) and corrected my ways (by leading me to this series on prayer). The correction has been corrupted by my human desires lately because I’ve been so focused on getting that hour (literally clocking it by watching the time that I started and calculating the time I have left.) in that I’ve completely lost out on the quality of the prayers (something my pastor warned about in the study). I’ve been of the mindset that I need to get this one hour in so I can check it off my list of things to do for that day. Shameful, I know.
What God has shown me just now is that what I am sowing (this rote, dispassionate approach to my prayer life), I am, unfortunately, reaping (He is hiding from answering all the questions I’ve had about my purpose in His kingdom and how I can best use the talents He’s blessed me with to glorify Him).
Had I been less selfishly focused on meeting my human desires), I would have been less distracted and more focused and open in my prayer s (sow) and would have heard God’s leading a long time ago (reap). How can He take the time to talk to me when I won’t take the time needed to have a quality chat with Him?
Although I’ve been putting in the hour, my time has been of no real quality. There were no deeper connections to be made with God because I was putting in zero effort. I am ashamed to admit that some of my prayers over the past few weeks have been so lackluster and so passionless that I’ve literally fallen asleep in the middle of them. How insulting to Jehovah, who has countless angels praising and glorifying Him daily, to have left His glory to sacrifice His life on my behalf and I can’t even bother to stay awake while talking to Him?!?
Welp. It’s 3:46am now and I conclude by thanking God for this realization that if I spend quality time with Him (sow), I will get a quality portion of His time (reap). Sounds self-explanatory, especially as you consider it in the context of 1 Samuel 2:30, but common sense is not always so common.
Lord, please hear my prayer that I’m grateful to serve THE mighty God and humbled that He should want to spend time with me. All You ask is that we honor You by putting You first (Matthew 6:33) then You will honor us by meeting our needs – starting with our need for a more meaningful relationship with you. Thank You that You love me enough to convict me of behavior not pleasing to You and for taking the time to correct me to do better. I’m sorry for each time that I’ve allowed my flesh instead of Your Spirit to lead. I pray for (me and for anyone reading this post who is struggling with this) a change from a flesh-led life to a Spirit-led life. Help us Lord to seek this every single day as the foundation for a richer and more passionate Godly life. Let our lives, in actions and not just words, glorify You and let us be a living testimony so others will seek You and come to saving grace. I pray all this in the holy name of Your Son Jesus. Amen.
As always, I love reading your thoughts. What are you sowing and reaping on your Christian journey? How has the Lord convicted and corrected you if those things are not pleasing to Him?
2 Peter 3:8 But, beloved, do not forget this one thing, that with the Lord one day is as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day. (NKJV)
Matthew 26:40 Then He came to the disciples and found them sleeping, and said to Peter, “What! Could you not watch with Me one hour? (NKJV)
Matthew 26:41 Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” (NKJV)
1 Samuel 2:30 … But now the Lord says: ‘Far be it from Me; for those who honor Me I will honor…’ (NKJV)
Matthew 6:33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you. (NKJV)