Questioning answered prayer? If you talk to God, Jesus, the angels, whatever it is you believe in or maybe just talking to yourself, you’re searching for answers. No big surprise there, right? God, please help me with this? Send me a message about that? Guide me to choose the right path? I am angry, I am sad and on it goes…It is uncanny how the answers come, then you might question it; No, not that? Really God?
What is an answered prayer?
I witness people going through some of the hardest times of their lives; I have witnessed myself going through some of the hardest times in my own life.I have prayed, meditated, talked to myself, written in journals, lit candles, burned incense, and surrendered. Surrendered. This is the key prayer. Surrender may even be a piece to the answered prayer. When we surrender, the white flag goes up, there is a sigh of relief, the brain lets go of the struggle and the heart opens, tears flow. There is a realization that something bigger is in control. Let’s call “bigger” wisdom. Wisdom is innate, it comes in the surrender. When we are in the surrender there is nothing to do but move forward wherever you’re at, listen and observe.
I have been praying for a “few” answers in my own life. Recently, I felt like watching the movie Bruce Almighty, a comedy with great messages in it. It didn’t hit me until a few days later why I watched it. At the end of the movie there is a scene of Bruce’s surrender. He is tired of playing God, he just doesn’t get it, loses everything including the woman he loves. He is on his knees in the middle of the street, crying,
“ You win! I’m done! I don’t want to do this anymore, I don’t want to be God. I want you to decide what’s right for me. I surrender to your will.” He then gets hit by a truck and finds himself in heaven. God says, (played by Morgan Freeman) “You can’t kneel in the middle of the highway and live to talk about it son.” Then God goes on to tell him about his divine spark and the gifts of joy that he brings to others. Bruce constantly wanted something else, felt he could do better, nothing was enough, he wasn’t enough. Every single thing in Bruce’s life became a struggle.
If you feel like you’re struggling in your own life no matter what the struggle is, turn to friends and family who love you. Let them help you with the surrender. From that surrender I invite you to keep moving forward wherever you’re at. I feel so fortunate in my own life to be reminded of this by working with the senior population and those that are terminally ill. God teaches me through them so I can bring it to you. Recently, I met a woman at the senior home I volunteer at. She is a beautiful woman in her late 70s. She had a neck surgery that went awry and paralyzed her for a time. She had to leave her comfortable little apartment, give up all possessions and live in a shared room in a nursing home. Slowly she gained strength but is mostly in a wheelchair now. This nursing home is all she can afford. She told me she didn’t know why this happened to her and was angry at first and now she just tries to help others and be happy here. We talked about many things; I could feel how much she enjoyed intelligent conversations, sharing of ideas, and mostly stories of how our lives change. As I drove home I imagined myself to be her, and I was humbled beyond belief.
Maybe there have been surrenders in your own life that you have not pondered; a surrender to move, leave a job or marriage for one reason or another. A surrender into letting go of an addiction. Surrender can be that you have done everything you can in any given situation to make it better. Some of the hardest surrenders I have witnessed are as a caregiver surrendering to the fact that my patient is not going to recover, a doctor surrendering that his patient is going to die no matter the treatment. A big one I often witness is a surrender that a person is not ready for help when they desperately need it. After the surrender the plan changes and we begin to follow the new path God is laying out for us.
Death is the total surrender. Grieving the loss is stepping into the surrender and allowing it to open the heart into that innate wisdom that I believe we all have. Many walk away from the surrender and the struggle is more like a tug of war or rowing up stream through rapids! That is how humans get into trouble, ignoring the surrender, which, you can surmise now, is God, guiding you to surrender to the life that is your divine plan or calling. We all experience pain in this life in many forms, no one escapes it, pray, do whatever it is you do. When your tired, and know there is nothing left to do, turn your heart towards God, surrender it all to him, breathe a sigh of relief and know you are exactly where you are meant to be.