Sometimes when we pray, since we know we are talking to a Holy God, we edit our prayers and we only share the good or we are afraid to really dig deep into the struggles of our hearts and communicate them with God –the dark places. Conversely, other times we do the reverse, all we do is grumble, complain and beg God to take away our pain, our struggle, our trials and to exercise His power to give us health, wealth and prosperity –an easy Christian life.
In Jeremiah 20:7, Jeremiah has had enough. He’s been the laughing stock of Israel. He’s been beaten, locked up, denied a family or a wife and has been preaching truth to people over and over who just don’t care about repentance or holiness in any capacity. Such is the faithful duty of a faithful prophet such as Jeremiah.
Yet, in Jeremiah 20:7 Jeremiah reveals another dimension to his faithfulness when he has an authentic moment of honesty. He claims the Lord had “deceived” him and that he has become a laughing stock. Such claims are incredibly bold against an Old Testament God who frequently punishing Israel with death and opposition for sin and questioning God’s authority. Yet, in Jeremiah’s rebuke towards God, we see Jeremiah’s heart bleed through with a unique x-ray vision of his heart that honestly articulates his truest inner feelings as they pour out over the communion table with God. Similarly, this above account is paralleled in Job’s desperate cry and questioning of God in Job 40:2 in which God says: “Will the one who contends with the Almighty correct him? Let him who accuses God answer him!”
Both passages communicate admirably liberating and incredibly rare honesty with God –that we as such unholy wretched sinners can come to Him who is Holy in Holy communion with God and communicate our frustrations. However, Job 40:2 includes a powerful response from a Holy and authoritative God in response to accusations and questioning. We must be incredibly careful to balance our communion-times with God and to balance the scales of honesty and respect in such a way that our prayers and communion with God are utterly, unapologetically honest with God but not swinging to the extreme of completely disrespecting His authority, and we must be careful to balance the scales of being completely shut-off and fake with God or praying merely for human-blessing and not pressing into Him through hard times trusting Him to do things His way.
#1 – When you come to God in prayer, do you just complain the entire time, then leave communion with God pessimistic, angry and upset and forget to see or search for His hidden goodness and hidden blessings in your life?
#2 – When you pray do you pray about all the good things and refuse to show God an x-ray of your true heart hoping and wishing God would address areas of your life that you are unwilling to bring before the Father? Are you being honest with God and sharing things you share with your best friend or are you with-holding those conversations with God?
#3 When you pray do you disrespect God and tell him he has no right to do what He is doing and completely embarrass him? If so, study further into (Job 38-40, specifically: Job 40:2), and see how God responded to job questioning his authority.
#4 – When you come to God in communion and prayer do you expect and approach the royal throne with a sense of being refreshed and resting in Him or do you just come to Him out of duty, eat and run or vent and leave? If you aren’t leaving refreshed meditate on: (Matthew 11:28)