I stood in the Christian bookstore thumbing through a volume on a subject I’d been researching. This looked like exactly what I wanted. “How to Help Your Child to Faith” contained 35 chapters, each directed toward parents on counseling and preparing their child for understanding the Christian faith and making his own commitment. What got me, however, was chapter 35.
The topic for that chapter was “Finally, all you can do is pray.” I laid the book down in disgust and walked away.
“Finally” implies that prayer is the last thing to do. “All you can do is pray” clearly says that prayer is the least thing you can do. The last, the least. What’s wrong with this picture?
What kind of philosophy of prayer is that? Think of it! As though to call on the Lord of Heaven and Earth to become involved in a situation involving a child you love dearly is some small thing to be lightly regarded.
If you need evidence of the fallen nature and sinful heart of man–even the best among us–consider the low regard we hold for prayer.
Confession time. I consider myself a person of prayer. Prayer is never far from my mind throughout the day, and after reading several chapters in the Bible each morning, I try to spend a good deal of time in prayer. And yet, I did the same thing I was criticizing that book’s author for doing.
I forgot to emphasize the pre-eminence of prayer. Over the past six months, as I have added the occasional “leadership lesson” to this collection, only this week did it occur to me that prayer should have been featured more prominently and much sooner.
I deeply apologize. Since my son has taught me how to edit these blogs, I know how to go into the website and insert this article earlier, giving it a much higher number. The problem is that no one would see it way down there, since those were written and dispatched into cyberspace months ago. So, number 40 it will have to remain, at least for the time being.
A leader is a decision-maker and a people-influencer. A leader sets the direction, then stands out front and blazes the trail. His mantra is “follow me.”