Many of you have read the book, If You Give A Mouse A Cookie… to your kids or grandchildren or nieces and nephews. It’s one of my personal favourites.
The title keeps rolling around in my head as I think about the last few weeks. In the spirit of that style, I came up with my own loose version; If You Start to Pray Then You Will Get Hammered. (You can insert any spiritual discipline in place of prayer.)
If you start to pray, you will get hammered.
Because if you start to pray (read your bible, memorize scripture) the enemy is not going to like it. In fact he’s going to zero in on your efforts.
You’ll start out excited and enthusiastic and then you’ll realize the enormity of the task you’ve taken on. He’ll make sure you see only that side of it and make sure you are so overwhelmed that you forget that I AM is on your side.
You’ll pray hard and then someone will get sick. Or two or three. The whole family is down for the count.
You’ll start again the next day, only to get distracted with all the chores that are now on your plate because everyone else is sick.
After much pep talking and earnestly praying again, things, not people, in your house will break down. Multiple times.
You’ll forget about your quiet time because now you are in crisis mode. I don’t have time to think about stopping to pray, you tell yourself.
But as the days turn to weeks, you whisper prayers as you run, then stop because what’s the point? Everything’s tanked since you started to pray! This isn’t how it’s supposed to be, the enemy will whisper in your ear. You’re doing it wrong. Your prayers are worthless. Give up.
You’ll listen for a while to that slippery snake. And then you’ll realize that even though it feels like the house is crashing down around you and all the balls you’ve been juggling have been dropped and smacked you on the head, in fact you are still standing. And so is your house.
Truth pushes it’s way to the front of your chaotic thoughts. You must be doing something right because it got hard. The enemy didn’t like it so he went after you. Stay the course. You are not alone, I AM with you, says the voice of Truth.
As you look around, you realize that this is indeed true. You see His handprints throughout the chaos, the brokenness and the crazy. They can’t be wiped away. Instead a glimmer of hope cracks through the darkness.
If you start to pray, then you will get hammered. But I AM is with you and He has placed you in the winner’s circle. The end (but not really as it’s just the beginning!)