Ever have one of those friends that just continues to speak nonstop? What you say doesn't seem to matter as much as them waiting for you to finish so they can say something else? "Conversation" with them is not really conversation, it's just an ongoing list of them ... things gone right, things gone wrong, what they need, what they want ...
It's like talking to them is simply listening to a litany of their rolling thoughts ... it's just exhausting to be in their presence ...
Or maybe ... you're that friend at times?
Yeah - me too ...
We love them - they are our friends - and sometimes they (or we) truly just need to vent ... I get that. But if this is our pattern for conversation, it can truly limit the benefit of friends, and more importantly growth.
Unfortunately I'm that way often with one Person in particular when conversing - God.
I hear some say that "there is no wrong way to pray".
Well, in spirit I understand; just as a patient and loving father will always welcome their children with his ear. God is the perfection of this patient and loving Father, and as for our endless talking, He welcomes that too - He even said as such.
But to not mature beyond this level of conversation is missing out on something spectacular. So while Grace and Forgiveness abound, I think I often pray immaturely ...
I still love one of the models of prayer that Jesus gave us for conversing with our Heavenly Father ...
"Father, you are Awesome and Holy!Then when?
Whatever Your will is, it shall be!
Could you supply my 'real needs'
... just for today?
We'll talk about tomorrow, tomorrow.
By the way, yet again, can you forgive me Father
... just as I've already forgiven others myself.
I know I already have it from Jesus,
... but I just wanted to confess my need for it again.
One more thing,
... please protect me from temptation and Satan today."
- Matthew 6:9-13 (MCT - Matt Conversational Translation)
We listen ... and sit ... how can we honestly expect to hear from God by speaking constantly?
Think about it ... when we go to the Lord in prayer, is our goal to get things off our chest - or is it to actually hear from God?
If our prayers are filled with words and lack a time of silence for God to speak ... what is the point?
It's just like that friend that never shuts up ... we love that friend, and we actually want to give them genuine input into their life - but they just are too busy unloading and not ready to receive.
So let us not be too busy to listen ... to our friends ... and more importantly to God.