Prayer as Comminication

Talking to God is widely accepted as normal. As a pastor I am regularly asked to pray in public giving thanks for the food and beseeching God on behalf of those present for better tomorrows.

Hands resting in prayerEven listening to God is also generally acceptable. Many people, Christians and others, are practicing some form of regular silent meditation as a spiritual exercise that strengthens one’s ability to be mentally present especially in stressful times.

But should someone say that God spoke to them, many people would stop and question that person’s sanity. For example, a woman had been hospitalized in a psychiatric institution with several ailments among them was her assertion that God had told her to give away all that she had. This was counted against her for in doing so she had eliminated all of her means of taking care of her activities of daily living. However, in do in so she had also brought sufficient notice to herself that another person recognized her distress and initiated a process to heal her underlying physiological conditions that adversely limited her emotional health.

Abram (later known as Abraham the patriarch of Israel) had a problem. God had promised vast lands for him and for his offspring. Yet he had no children of his own. His only heir was a slave in his household. Then the word of the came to Abram a third time again promising him that his offspring would be as numerous as the stars in the heavens.

I will have more to say about Genesis 15 on Sunday, February 21st, at Temple Terrace Presbyterian Church.
Robert Shaw, Pastor