A child-like faith.
When I was young, I believed that my dad could fix anything. My dad is really good with machines, electricity, and handy-man stuff (this is true to this day), and so if anything were to break, I knew that he would be able to fix it, or at least be able to help me solve it. If I couldn’t figure something out, he was the first one I would contact. I still remember calling him on his pager as a 7-year-old because I couldn’t figure out WHY ALL THE TEXT SUDDENLY LOOKED LIKE THIS. (Obviously, I had turned on the Caps Lock — a simple issue in hindsight — but I actually thought I broke down the computer forever. I may or may not have cried over this. :P)
Also when I was young, I believed that God actually answered prayers, even small ones that seemed insignificant. I really believed that my prayers actually caused something to change. One time, my dad lost his credit card in the house, and while the rest of the family looked around everywhere to see if they could find it, I went on my knees to pray. When we found it a couple minutes later, I saw the fact that the card was found as proof that God answered prayers.
Somehow, over the course of physical and spiritual “growth,” I forget this kind of faith that really believes that nothing — absolutely nothing — is too insignificant to bring up to God. I see this often during our prayer meetings, when we would eagerly share “big” or “urgent” prayer requests (“My friend is in the hospital with cancer,” “Persons A & B are in hiding because they’re preaching the Gospel in Country C,” etc.), but are often hesitant to bring up seemingly “minor” requests because they seem too small to bring up. We don’t want to waste everyone’s time praying for my car that’s making weird noises, or my ankle that’s hurting, or my fight with my friend, or my struggle in academics. And even worse, we don’t want to waste God’s time praying for something that seems trivial.
And in this “adult” mindset, we inadvertently believe in one of these lies:
- God is too busy for our trivial matters. Jesus’ first miracle wasn’t healing the sick, or raising the dead, or even feeding thousands of people; it was making a wedding party last longer with more wine. Jesus could’ve said, “No man, that’s too small. Really? You want me to make more wine? I’ve gotta start my miracle-making ministry with a bang!” But he didn’t. I really do believe that God is not encumbered when we bring our trivial requests to Him. First, in light of eternity, all our requests are trivial anyway. And also, a Father who truly cares and loves a child would also cares about his/her needs, no matter how “trivial” it may seem.
- Prayer is just a Christian term for wishing for something. We Christians would never say this, but the way we pray reveals this. We treat prayer like we do when we throw pennies into a wishing well or when we blow candles on our birthday. We could wish for things to happen, but we don’t really expect it to happen — at least not without a lot of help from ourselves. As a result, when we eventually get what we wished for, rarely do we attribute it to the act of wishing. A man who wishes for a stable job when he throws a penny into a wishing well would rarely attribute getting a job to the act of throwing a coin into a pool of water. But often times this is the way we pray, without real anticipation that not only does God hear and answer our prayers; He could answer it without our help or involvement.
I must once again learn to pray with realfaith that truly believes that nothing is too trivial for my Father to hear, and that my Father actually responds to my prayers. I need more child-like faith.