Praying with Joy

 I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now, being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Phil. 1:3-6

I’m sure you know people that you dread to see walk up to start a conversation with you.  You just know that regardless of whether you ask them how they are doing or not, they are going to tell you about all their aches and pains, their misfortunes—whatever is troubling them.  They are good people, but when they unload their troubles on you, it makes it difficult to keep your smile and positive attitude.  You sometimes look for a way to avoid them because you just feel you can’t handle another load of trouble.

We all know those people, but the thought that struck me is “Are we those people when we approach God in prayer?” Sometimes we keep a prayer list, but it usually just contains the things we want to ask God for. It’s kind of like our shopping list when we go to the grocery store. We don’t want to miss anything. Let’s be sure to ask God to bless every sick person, every troubled person, every lonely person—you get the picture.

The great thing is that God does hear those prayers and He does bless those people. But the question we need to consider is “Are we as regular in going to God to express our joys and our thankfulness?” Do we become to God like those people we dread to see approaching us? Are we always asking for things, or do we take time to brighten God’s day with our joy and thankfulness? The positive things are there. We just have to look for them and thank God for them.

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