- John Van Sloten
How Creation Can Empower Your Prayers
Last week I had a profound prayer experience.
While out for a walk, I wondered if there was a way to deepen my experience of God in prayer; to empower it and make it more real.
Then I stumbled on an answer.
In my imagination I held two thoughts together; the fact that at that very moment there were 425 trillion DNA repairs happening in my body per second, and that that same body, walking on this planet, in this solar system, within this galaxy, is currently flying along at 1.9 million mph relative to the Universe itself.
Then, knowing that God was providentially holding both of these things - the infinitesimal and infinite - I tried to imagine God sustaining everything in between; from the biomechanics of my knees, to the earth's hydrological cycle, to the global economy, etc.
With all of my heart I believe that all things are held together in Christ by the Holy Spirit.
In the glory of that thought, I prayed for a few needs in my life - with a sense of power that was palpable. As I prayed I knew that I wasn’t asking for things that were out of God's control, or that were impossible to accomplish. I was asking for things that were already, in every sense imaginable, held by God. And there was something about keeping God's faithful actions via creation in mind that gave me the faith to trust in his promises to me (as I know them via the bible).
To be honest I've never felt this kind of power in prayer before. Nor have I felt as numinous a sense of Christ's presence. Even as he holds all things, he holds me... he holds all of our lives
Then, this morning, I stumble upon the same pattern, playing out through the words of the prophet Jeremiah;
"This is what the LORD says, he who appoints the sun to shine by day, who decrees the moon and stars to shine by night, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar— the LORD Almighty is his name: “Only if these decrees vanish from my sight,” declares the LORD, “will Israel ever cease being a nation before me.” This is what the LORD says: “Only if the heavens above can be measured and the foundations of the earth below be searched out will I reject all the descendants of Israel because of all they have done,” declares the LORD."
Jeremiah 31:35-37, NIV
The pattern is repeated twice. "This is what God says - the one who's holding the cosmos together... and... the only one who knows all of creation's mysteries - I'm going to keep my promise to take care of you."
Only this pattern had really been repeated countless times since Jeremiah; God's faithfulness in creation has been speaking everywhere, for all the time. Every promise he's ever made has had creation's imprimatur! God's word is good because his creation words are good!
So if your faith is flagging, look around. If your prayers feel pathetic, consider God's revelation via creation - his ever-faithful word through all that he's made and faithfully sustains.