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Honestly Praying


When I was a child I always had polished prayers. I would not dare speak profanely, or oddly in my prayers. Prayer was not the place to question God. Sometimes it seems awkward to talk to God like a normal person, to really tell him what is on my mind. If I say a bad word will He be offended? If I question Him will he be upset? The truth is, He hears all my thoughts before I even speak them and He hears every word I say (Ps 139:4). Even if I do not vocalize my real feelings and doubts while in prayer He already knows.

When you read the Psalms (a book pretty much made up of prayers) you find brutal honesty. In Psalm 6 verses 4-6 the poet writes, “I am sick at heart. How long, O Lord, until you restore me? Return, O LORD, and rescue me. Save me because of your unfailing love. For the dead do not remember you. Who can praise you from the grave? I am a worm out from sobbing. All night I flood my bed with weeping, drenching it with my tears…”

I will stop there, but it gets worse… much worse. And this is just one out of many. The poet tells God how miserable he is and is accusing God of abandoning him! That is serious. Lets not even get to how he tries to manipulate God (“hey man, if I die how can I praise you? So… it’s in your best interest to save me”). The prophet Habakkuk is the boldest of them all! He questions God on his timing (Hab 1:1-4), and he questions Gods methods (1:12-17).

But yet, still, God found it worthy to be called Scripture. “Why” we might ask? The answer is simple: Because it’shonest. The Bible is filled with it’s writers humanity. If the Bible writers can be honest so can we.

It’s okay to be honest with God. He understands. For it is written, “For he knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust.” (Ps 103:14)

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