Certainly everyone who has used email has at some point undoubtedly received back a message stating: “the message you sent was undeliverable”. There can be both technical and human reasons why some emails fail to go through. Today I want to draw a parallel between broken email communications and our own, occasionally broken communications, with God.
By way of explanation and notification I want to inform everyone who sent me an email using the email address firstname.lastname@example.org in the last 4 weeks that I did not receive your email. Are you one of the many who sent me an email only to have it rejected during this period? If so, after reading today’s message would you be so kind as to resend that email. I do want to know what you had to say!
I am indebted to one persistent individual. This person, after receiving several rejected email notifications from my email server, printed out his email and sent it to me by way of the US Mail. Prior to receiving his letter, I had no idea that my email address was broken.
Why did he go to such extra effort? The answer is simple: He thought his message was important enough for me to read, and it was! I was moved by his open and honest sharing. Is it possible that there is a spiritual lesson in all of this? I think so, please read on.
Let’s examine a few of the things that can go wrong with email communications. The simplest and most common reason for a rejected email is that the recipient’s address has changed. The next most likely reason is that the sender is spelling the email address incorrectly. These are examples of human error.
My problem was a technical glitch. My web master changed our server and failed to correctly adjust the router settings for email@example.com. I could go on to explain all of the DNS routing mumbo jumbo that he explained to me but I will spare you that headache. The good news is that it has been fixed. I am sorry for any inconvenience it may have caused you.
Okay so what is our spiritual message for today? I want to focus a few thoughts on broken communications with God.
There are many ways in which we communicate with each other such as calling, texting and emailing. There are also many ways to communicate with God such as vocal, meditative, and contemplative prayer.
Rest assured that no matter what type of prayer we use, God receives all of our emails (prayers). The trouble in communication is never at His end. Neither human error nor technical error can stop God from knowing what’s on our hearts. Sometimes we are inclined to think God isn’t receiving our prayer requests. Other times we believe God simply isn’t answering our prayers.
The Bible tells us to be persistent in our prayers. Look at these verses:
Psalm 40:2 “Surely, I wait for the LORD; who bends down to me and hears my cry.”
1 Thessalonians 5:17 “pray without ceasing”
Luke 11:5-8 “And he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend to whom he goes at midnight and says, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread, for a friend of mine has arrived at my house from a journey and I have nothing to offer him,’ and he says in reply from within, ‘Do not bother me; the door has already been locked and my children and I are already in bed. I cannot get up to give you anything.’ I tell you, if he does not get up to give him the loaves because of their friendship, he will get up to give him whatever he needs because of his persistence.”
We must never forget what Jesus told us in John 15:5 “because without me you can do nothing.” We need to pray with a deep understanding of our dependency on God.
Here are a few things to consider if we think that God isn’t answering our prayers:
TRUST: God gives us what we need not what we ask for. Do we trust him? Matthew 7:9-10 tells us this: “Which one of you would hand his son a stone when he asks for a loaf of bread, or a snake when he asks for a fish?”
AVAIALBILTY: We seem to always be available to everyone trying to reach us with modern forms of communication yet we only give God an hour or two a week to speak to us.
SILENCE: Is there too much noise in our lives that we can’t hear God when He tries to answer our prayers? As many of you know I am a big proponent of silent retreats. Have you ever been on one? Remember we often hear God in whispers.
Jesus left us a few simple prayer principles. Here are a few:
- When praying to the Father, ask your prayers in the name of Jesus.
- Ask for God’s will not your will.
- Have faith in His response.
- Be persistent
Finally we must ask ourselves if we have added God’s name to our spam blocker. Maybe we just don’t want to hear His answer. When we pray we must be willing to have an open, honest and trusting line of communication.
My broken email line of communication with you is now open again. Make sure going forth that your line of communication with God is open too.
Speak Lord your servant is listening! To write to me and share your thoughts, views or questions. Click here
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