Monday, March 14, 2011

Are My Prayers Heard?

Caleb said to her, "What do you want?"
She said to him, "Give me a blessing.
Since you have set me in the land
of the Negev, give me also springs of water.
And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the lower springs.

Judges 1:13b - 15

For years I’ve wrestled with the purpose of prayer. Truthfully asking, “does God hear my prayers” or would the same thing happen if I hadn’t prayed at all. Reflecting back on a couple of my “pray without ceasing” themes I have to say, they were not and have not been answered. Many would tell me, “well that is God’s answer!” Personally, I’m not satisfied with that response for the reason that I was praying how Jesus taught me to pray.

For some this may be very unsettling and for that I apologize. My faith is one of constant wrestling and struggle. And, it seems that the older I get the more complex it becomes. It’s for this reason that Achsah’s prayer to Caleb is so intriguing.

Not satisfied with her wedding gift of miles of dry, worthless desert Achsah high tails it to her father. "Give me a blessing–I can’t live in the desert without water." It’s a prayer, a cry, a pleading from a daughter to her father. She isn’t asking for anything more than she needs but only for what will give her the ability to live. Caleb responds with abundant alacrity giving Achsah the upper AND lower springs.

That’s really all I want, is to be able to have what I need to live in the desert. I cling to the generosity of Caleb as a symbol of God’s potential generosity. Perhaps I don’t possess the boldness of Achsah but I am beyond expecting that life in the desert will end. Over and over I read this conversation between a daughter and her father and hope that my prayers could be heard in the same way.

Father, I am your child!
Hear my cry!
I am not asking for the desert to be removed
Hear my voice!
Bless me with your living waters.

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