Last week, my pastor challenged for us to find something we struggle with and then to pray for that one thing for ourselves.
He said that he had talked with Beth Moore one afternoon. He had found that she had the most passion and veal for God that he had ever met in a person. At the end of his talk with her, he asked if there was anything that she would like him to pray for her. She responded by saying that she would like him to pray that she would fall into a deeper passion and love for God. He said he was surprised.
Why would she need prayer for something she obviously had?
Next, he talked about his father. He said, his father was the most humble person he knew, yet his father said that every day he prayed to be more humble. Once again, my pastor was surprised.
Why would someone so humble pray to be humble?
He ended with saying, the things they were asking him to pray for was something they battled against, and struggled with and God was faithfully answering their prayers.
Beth Moore is so in love with Jesus.
My pastors dad is incredibly humble.
So I decided to take his challenge, and as usual, I put way to much pressure on myself with the frame of mind that it had to be something I really need to work on.
I couldn’t think of anything to pray about. This wasn’t because I couldn’t see any struggles in my life. No, it was that I could see too many issues and couldn’t pick just one. It was just too hard of a decision.
What if I picked the wrong struggle to pray about? What if, after I made my decision, I found something better to pray about?
I began to pray this week that God would reveal that struggle in my life and make it clear what He wanted me to pray about.
After a whole weeks worth of waiting, it finally hit me today.
Life is so full of drama and problems, and I have been facing some of that recently at school. As I finished my classes for the day and was walking out, I begin praying. I asked God to make me more like Joshua. Strong and courageous.
Immediately, when I prayed those words, my mind flashed back to a few weeks ago. I was on the phone with a good friend of mine. She had been really struggling through some issues and was giving me a heads up on what was happening in that moment. I remember telling her how strong she was.
“I am so weak,” was her response to me, and I was surprised. How could someone who had survived so much in her short life think she was weak?
I remembered my pastor’s sermon, and the thought struck me that Joshua wasn’t a strong or courageous person. He was a weak and fearful person who God molded into a strong and courageous being.
In this moment, the thought overwhelmed me. Joshua was weak. Joshua was just like me. Just like my friend is. A weak human that is made strong in Christ Jesus.
I couldn’t pray to be more like Joshua because I already am like him. Weak and fearful.
In the first 9 verse in the book of Joshua, he is told 3 times to be strong and courageous. Two of those verses were literally back to back.
To tell someone 3 times to be strong and courageous tells me that Joshua was freaking out.
My friend, she was not strong, but between the prayers for her, God’s care, and the support of those around her, she has become strong and courageous.
Joshua was the same way. God told him, “Hey, I want you to do this thing for me and I know it’s terrifying. But if you stay on the path I am giving you, you will make it just fine.” So Joshua took the advice to heart and went on later to tell all the people he was leading the same advice.
This brings me back to my prayer.
I should not be praying that I become more like Joshua. I would still be a weak and fearful person. I want to pray that I let God work through me to become strong and courageous. Whether it be in the times when my world is calm or times when my world is in chaos.
“…Be strong and courageous and do it. Do not be afraid and do not be dismayed, for the LORD God, even my God, is with you. He will not leave you or forsake you, until all the work for the service of the house of the LORD is finished.”