"Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done. If you do this, you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus."
- Philippians 4:6-7 NLT
Occasionally, I hear from people who disagree with me about some of the things I pray for. They might say, "You shouldn't be praying for your pets." Or, "You ought not to be praying about your teeth." Sometimes these folks sound so sure about their convictions, that I feel compelled to go to God and ask for HIS perspective in the matter. When this happened recently, the Lord led me to the teaching of one of the most well-respected ministers of our time. This godly man condemned the "sophistication and intellectualism" which would prevent us from having the childlike faith that Jesus praised. (Mark 10:15, Luke 10:21) Not only does this kind of cynicism and skepticism rob us of God's best, but it prevents us from having the intensely intimate relationship with God that He desires us to have.
As I thought about this man's words, I was reminded of one of the reasons why I began drifting away from God while I was growing up. I had learned about Christ as a young child, and I eagerly embraced my blossoming relationship with Him, talking to Him about anything and everything. But as I matured, I heard more and more people saying, "You shouldn't be praying about that." Or, "You shouldn't be bothering God with things like that." As a result, I began praying less and less, and I started seeing God as a cold and distant Parent, instead of a loving and compassionate one.
Scripture says: "Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything." (Philippians 4:6 NLT) Notice it says to pray about EVERYTHING. And it lists no exceptions to the rule. That's because God wanted to make it clear to us that there isn't ANYTHING that we can't talk to Him about. He knows that whatever we don't take to Him in prayer, we're going to worry about. And He doesn't want us worrying, because He knows how destructive worry is to our spirits, minds, and bodies. And He promises us that as we bring all of our concerns to Him in prayer, He will reward us with a supernatural peace that transcends human comprehension.
The Bible says: "The steps of the godly are directed by the Lord. He delights in every detail of their lives." (Psalm 37:23 NLT) God is pleased when we bring every aspect of our lives before Him in prayer. We never have to worry that we are bothering Him with trivial matters. He is concerned about everything that concerns us. When I tell people that the Lord wants them to pray about their pets, their teeth, and all of their other concerns, they begin to see our God as a warm, loving Parent, to whom they can run with the smallest care. In the world, as children mature, they are expected to become less and less dependent upon their parents. But in God's kingdom, as we mature spiritually, we are expected to become more and more dependent upon our heavenly Father. And one way we do that is by laying all of our requests and concerns before Him.
Since I began praying about everything, I have seen God work miracles in situations that I wouldn't have dreamed of praying about years ago. And I am closer to the Lord now than I've ever been. Don't ever let anyone tell you that there are things that you can't pray about. Keep the kind of childlike faith that pleases God and draws you to Him. May this promise from the Lord encourage your heart today - "God cares, cares right down to the last detail"! (James 5:11 MSG)
Prayer: Lord, forgive me for failing to bring my concerns to You in childlike faith and prayer. Guard me from the cynicism, ignorance, and fear that would keep me from coming to You with my littlest cares. Help me to see You as the incredibly loving, warm, and merciful Parent you are, so that I can enjoy an intensely intimate relationship with You. Thank You that as I pray about everything, You will reward me with supernatural peace, joy, and blessings!
- J. M. Farro