Some reading the other day helped me gain new understanding and motivated me to write a new blessing. Realizing my thanks to God could be more succinct, I wrote the following:
Dear Heavenly Father, out of Thy abundance we give thanks and praise Thy Holy name. In Christ’s name we pray. Amen.
Now, a first surface reading of this prayer may not yield its depth but praying it time and again reminds me God’s provisions are enough. Any lingering idea God is a grandfather appeasing childish expectations and indulging self-centered desires fades. If before I had banished the idea from my conscious by my own effort, the prayer removed it wholly from my subconscious. I gained from it a sense of how much God had given without my effort.
This sense, this culmination, this revelation was an answer to a question I had not asked. The momentary realization came not before God had readied me for its truth. Writing it, praying it, I understood more thoroughly than before what God had done for me. My long misunderstanding passed. My imagined god, the sum of all those” supposed-to-be’s,” disappeared. God became God to me, not some possessive pronoun. I have been put in my place and He in His. But wasn’t He there all along? And I a latecomer? This prayer focused me on God as giver and not the gift. The truth in it deepens my faith.
Contrast this with our world today. Daily we get the message enough is not enough. We are told we need more, and more is good. In his book, “It All Goes Back in the Box,” John Ortberg aptly describes this as the “myth of more.” An image of rich television preachers keeps entering my mind. Jesus diagnosed it well. “You fool,” he said in response to the man who wanted to build bigger barns.
Abiding in God’s revelation, effervescing from my prayer is what I always heard and called “A right relationship with God.” God is creator and I, His creation. All that I am, all I receive is from Him, his abundance shared with me—and you, too. Did not Jesus say a servant cannot be greater than his master? Is this not my revelation? My revelation came slowly, but it came.
James, the Apostle, half-brother of Jesus, wrote this truth long ago. “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning” (James 1: 17, NKJV).
Should I suggest if you pray the prayer, my revelation could become yours? Perhaps, but then it may not speak to you at all. God, in His grace, may have in store another path for you to the same revelation or another. He may be readying you by some other means to answer your long question. But to be the good servant, I share both the revelation and prayer that His grace may prepare you.
Out of Thy abundance we give thanks and praise Thy Holy name.