Proverbs has one of the most honest prayers ever, with this ask:
Give me neither poverty nor riches; provide me only with the food I need;
Lest, being full, I deny you, saying, "Who is the LORD?"
Or, being in want, I steal, and profane the name of my God.
This is the prayer of someone who knows themselves well. All too well.
Someone who knows that they are able to take any circumstance, any situation they find themselves in. And abuse it, to separate themselves from God.
This is someone who is so aware of the danger that they present to themselves, that they don’t even know what to ask for.
It’s like driving a car. The windshield seems fine. Clean enough to be able see where you’re going.
But turn into the sun, and you get a surprise. You get to see the real condition of your windshield. All of the dirt and bugs. Maybe even a crack.
When you start praying regularly, it’s easy to feel good about yourself. Spending time with God will do that to you.
But as you get closer to God, at some point you get a surprise. You get to see yourself against the glory of a holy and perfect God.
Which means you get to see the real condition of you. All of the dirt and bugs. Maybe even a crack.
When that happens, our natural impulse is to turn away. Because seeing our real condition isn’t something we like to think about.
And that is exactly what makes this such a powerful prayer. Because at that very moment when it would be easier to turn away, or not think about it, this prayer doesn’t even blink.
It says “God, you know me better than I do. How easily I can screw this up. Give me not what I think I want, but what you know I really need. God, I trust you.”
It’s one of the most honest prayers ever.
One that needs to be yours and mine.