Instant transparency

th-9Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. (James 5:16)

As more and more prayer requests come in, you, our Catch community, become more and more real. That may be one of the side effects of praying together – we share our lives with each other. What I would call instant transparency. Prayer gives us the immediate opportunity to get to what concerns us.

There are lost jobs, cancers, deadbeat kids and struggles with gender identity to deal with.  This is not necessarily the kind of information usually divulged upon first meeting someone, nor what you hear around the water cooler at work, yet when prayer is involved, we get right down to it.

This is good. It gets us beyond superficialities and into what really counts. After all, if we’re going to ask for prayer, we’re naturally going to go to those things that are most troubling to us. And, in turn, that deepens our relationships. Here we are divulging our greatest fears – our most pressing dilemmas – to total strangers, and we’re making connections. We’re making contact. We’re getting help where we need it the most.

If there is anything following Christ has taught us, it is that we are all hurting, needy people. Not one of us has it all together. Not one of us doesn’t have a painful prayer request to reveal. So, in asking for prayer, we touch each other. We come together at the point of need. This is what God wants us to do.

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)

I get something to give to you; you get something to give to me. What comes around, goes around.

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3 Responses to Instant transparency

  1. peter leenheer says:

    Here is some of my transparency…..
    At the Prayer Gathering in my church we were led to praying in groups of three for some things that pertained to our selves. My request was first of all that I finish strong in the faith, Apparently statistics for messing up are not flattering…1 in 10 men finish strong. Steve Farrar statistic.

    Second that as the song says, “Strength will rise as I wait upon the Lord”, my request was that as I wait for the Lord to guide my life where he has planned it to go that I would have that strength.

    The next morning the devotional emails that I receive including the Catch gave me seven points, which I saw as a direct answer from God.
    1. That the Holy Spirit be my guide in all I do.
    2. That I surrender my own personal agenda. (Proverbs 16:9)
    3. Stay in intimate relationship with God via prayer and His word.
    4. Recognize that my ways are not even close to what God has in mind. (Isaiah 55: 8,9
    5. Wait for the Lord, sit tight, and stay in his grace, and don’t go ahead in your own strength. (Abraham and Sara had Ishmael when they got outside of God’s grace.)
    6. The breaking of my selfishness or brokenness cause my strength to rise.
    7. Finish strong with the Lord.

    Just the answer I needed. Not that these items are foreign to me but I needed the reminder desperately. Thank you Lord. Yes it was a pleasant surprise that God answered so quickly. I was on cloud nine for the rest of the day, and it is lingering.

    Hope this inspires others to reach out in prayer….
    John thank you for beginning a ‘series on prayer’, you have a unique perspective I enjoy and find inspirational. Thank you for listening to the Holy Spirit, that is what I love about you.

  2. Tim says:

    At this point in life (early seventh decade), I’ve finally realized that “transparency” is a great goal and a popular buzzword in modern culture–as well as in the church. But true transparency is almost nonexistent in people still occupying flesh. Like Shrek, we ogres are multi-layered “onions” and we peel the layers back cautiously. But we never reveal it all. In fact, I’m not sure we can even see that deeply into OURSELVES, let alone others. Maybe this is part of what Paul was talking about in 1 Corinthians 13:12 “For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.”
    We long to know and be known. The fellowship of prayer and confession gives us the best chance for approaching it…but I’ve quit fooling myself about being “transparent” with even my most intimate relationships. Instead, I prefer to say, “I’m trying to reveal as much of my heart as I can…”

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