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It is Your Life

August 1, 2016

“Whether you like it or not,

read and pray daily.

It is your life.

There is no other way;

else you will be a trifler all of your days.”

— John Wesley

When I started playing trumpet in fourth grade, Mr. Harris was our Band Director. He reduced our noisy and excited Beginner Band to silence with this announcement:

“Every day. You’ve got to practice every day.”

Somewhere along the way, I got the impression that unless we were willing to practice 15 minutes every day there was no room for us in the band.

Mr. Wesley advised, “Read and pray daily. It is your life.”

Mr. Harris and Mr. Wesley weren’t kidding with their comments on consistency.

Neither was Jesus when he talked about prayer and said —

“Here’s what I want you to do: Find a quiet, secluded place so you won’t be tempted to role-play before God.

“Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage.

“The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense his grace.

“The world is full of so-called prayer warriors who are prayer-ignorant. They’re full of formulas and programs and advice, peddling techniques for getting what you want from God. Don’t fall for that nonsense.

“This is your Father you are dealing with, and he knows better than you what you need. With a God like this loving you, you can pray very simply. Like this:

“Our Father in heaven,
Reveal who you are.
Set the world right;
Do what’s best—
    as above, so below.
Keep us alive with three square meals.
Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others.
Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil.
You’re in charge!
You can do anything you want!
You’re ablaze in beauty!
    Yes. Yes. Yes!” (Matthew 6:6-13)

— All I can dare to add is an Amen, and a reminder that I’ll see you back here tomorrow.

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