- “No, I haven’t prayed about this—it isn’t that important, after all.”
- “I don’t want to bother God.”
- “I’m sure God has more important things to take care of than my little problem.”
Have you ever heard someone say any of these things? Have you?
As finite human beings, it is difficult for us to conceive of an all-powerful, omniscient God. We get overwhelmed—people constantly make demands on us, our calendars are full, and we just don’t have the time or energy to deal with every little issue that comes up. Moreover, when we’re so swamped ourselves, we have a hard time caring about the minutia of other peoples’ lives. Let them deal with their own problems—we have enough of our own.
In turn, we apply our reality to God. He’s running the entire universe! How could He have time to deal with the details of my life?
We even feel guilty praying over things that aren’t critical. Perhaps our parents were too busy or distracted to pay attention to us unless there was a major crisis, and we assume God is the same—after all, we call Him our Father. So, we ask God to heal our cancer, but not our head cold. We pray for world peace, but do we pray when we have a falling out with a friend? We might ask Him for a good deal on a new car, but how about a parking space?
After all, we’re adults. We don’t want to be always running to God—do we?
I think that’s exactly what God wants us to do.
- Isaiah 31: 1 says, “Woe to those who … do not look to the Holy One of Israel,or seek help from the Lord.”
- Proverbs 3:5 reads, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding… .” (italics mine).
- In 1 Thessalonians 5:17, we’re told to “pray without ceasing.”
- Paul exhorts us in Philippians 4:6 to “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God… . (italics mine).
Nowhere does God say, “You can bother me about the big stuff, but that’s all, because you know I’m very busy.”
And does God care about the details? Consider His directions for building the temple—there are entire chapters in 1 Kings giving precise materials and measurements for its construction. He gave the Israelites details about how they were to live even to such seemingly inconsequential things as what fibers to use when weaving cloth, and how His priests should wear their sideburns!
Does He care about our details? “ Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered.” (Matthew 10:29-30)
Any God who bothers to keep count of the hairs on my head (and I happen to have quite a few), surely isn’t upset when I “bother” Him with the other parts of my daily life. In fact, when Jesus spoke about people who were bothering others, He often praised the “botherers”! Check out Mark 5:21-43, about a bleeding woman and a desperate father who bothered Jesus and lovingly received what they asked for.
One of my favorite verses is Colossians 1:16-17—
For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.
If God created all things, that means the big and the small. And not only did He create everything, but in him all things hold together. He’s actively involved in the day to day details of the universe, and that includes us.
My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.
He will not allow your foot to be moved;
He who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, He who keeps Israel
Shall neither slumber nor sleep. (Psalm 121:2-4)