My prayer life has increased drastically over the past few months. I’ve learned that the growth of my personal prayer life is a direct reflection of my heart’s desperation for more of Jesus.
In this season of recovery and rest, I’ve been made more aware of my own inadequacies than I ever have been before. This has forced me to rely less on myself and more on Him. It’s a great season to be in — drawing nearer to Christ daily — but it also reveals to me that I hadn’t been pursuing Christ in the way I need to.
When I’m really intimate and close to the Lord, I am able to hear His voice differently. I see more clearly the direction of my life and where He’s taking me, and even if I don’t fully see it, I have an incredible peace knowing He’s in control. When we’re not forced into positions of humility, it is sometimes harder to feel as closely connected or reliant on something or someone else. A deep need fosters a deep relationship.
As a Christ-follower, I am striving for consistency. Rain or shine, good day or bad, I want to maintain a relationship with Christ that’s consistent — not based on my external circumstances. Whether in a season of fruitfulness or desperation, my need for God’s strength remains the same. I pray my walk with the Lord continues to grow richer and deeper. At the end of the day, no matter what happens, if we keep that perspective, our joy and peace are immovable. Being one in spirit with the Lord, drawing nearer to Him through His Word and prayer, is exactly where I need to be 100 percent of the time.
But more often than not, we draw near to the Lord when something goes wrong. I don’t want that to be the case. My prayer is, “Lord, keep me in a position of humility so I stay close to You no matter what is going on. No matter what it takes.”
God continues to “wow” me as I draw near to Him. The moments I’m most blown away by His presence are when I experience a peace and comfort in my spirit about a certain subject I’ve been praying about. I often pray that God would give me a peace or open doors to walk through. These become telltale signs that God is pointing me in a certain direction or not. When my will is aligned with His, I’m able to discern what He desires, and when I walk in that direction, I experience peace. I’m less likely to do things out of my own selfishness and more in tune to think of Kingdom-building things first.
Romans 8:28 gives me the confidence to know that though I may think I know what’s best for my life, God’s ways are always higher.
“We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.” — Romans 8:28
When I pray for specific things and God’s answer isn’t what I had hoped for or expected, at the time I may be disappointed. But ultimately I know that what God has for me down the road is better. Maybe He says no, or not right now. But what gives me confidence is knowing that the Lord knows what’s best for me and He has orchestrated it all before the beginning of time!
He has me right where He wants me. Whether my situation is “good” or “bad” in my own eyes, I’m content knowing I’m exactly where I need to be.
— Chris Maragos, Philadelphia Eagles safety