Everything we do in the Christian life is easier than prayer.
– Dr. Martin Lloyd Jones
This quote seemed very odd to me at first. Prayer, hard? But it’s just talking to God–how can that be hard?
After a bit of thought and discussion, though, I realized that Dr. Jones had a good point. Prayer in itself isn’t difficult, but sometimes it can be difficult to remember to pray. Life goes by so rapidly sometimes, full of a million things that catch our attention and divert our energy. On many days, hours go by and I realize that I haven’t once given thanks or made intercession to the God who is the author of the universe. The problem is certainly not that I have nothing to pray about, but simply that I have been too distracted to pray.
At moments like that, I tend to remember the rough times…the times when I felt that I spent entire days crying out, shrieking silently to heaven, pleading with my Abba to bring me through another minute, thanking Him for the small graces, begging His forgiveness.
And I realized…
When life is hard, prayer is easy. When life is easy, prayer is hard.
When life is tripping along smoothly, when I am capable and cheerful and busy, my thoughts don’t tend to dive into prayer very often. As I flip through the days of my life, I am constantly organizing my time, running here and there, and feeling rather smugly in control.
But sometimes, the cycle is interrupted, I spin out of control, and then I know no other option but to lean hard into my Abba. And I realize that my utter weakness and helplessness is actually my greatest strength, because when I reach my lowest point, He carries me, and no one could possibly be stronger than Him. When my weak knees won’t hold me up, He reaches out and lifts me. And prayer is easy then, because He is so close as I press deeper into Him.
When I am weak, then prayer flows freely. And then, in His embrace, I am strong. Whether I realize it or not.