Lift a Prayer; Let It Go

Written by Rachel Denison

Are you anything like me? I worry over issues I could not control if I wanted to. I “pray” and “give these things to God”, but the fear still plagues my heart. I will toss and turn at night after saying my bedtime prayers with no relief.

At our staff’s morning prayer a few days ago, one of our colleagues prayed something profound I had never thought about. It was a moment of revelation for my heart. It went something like this, “Father, I thank you that you hear our prayers, and when we give them over and lift these issues to you, we can trust you to take care of them.” In that moment God spoke to my heart– lift a prayer and let it go. It may sound simple, but its power was profound in my heart.

I picture it this way. I’m a little child before the Father, and I try to hand him the issue that is causing fear to control my heart. I lift it up to hand it to him, he takes it in his hand, but I never let it go. How silly is that image? No matter how he tries to help me, or take something from me, I won’t let him. I won’t let him take it away. 

This spoke to a core issue of mistrust in my heart. Why would I feel the need to hold onto a fear in order to attempt to control it when I literally have no control at all? As foolish as this made me feel, I felt God’s mercy. He is so patient, even in the midst of our broken tendencies.

The truth is, all that we are is so much better off in his hands. The moment I begin to trust myself and my own judgment over the infallible nature of my heavenly Father, I step into dangerous territory. I remember one very famous woman saying, “The serpent deceived me, and I ate.” I feel like I’ve fallen into this ploy. Anytime our judgment says we know better than the Father, we are nothing but deceived. But still we buy it. We buy into this lie somewhere in our hearts, and slowly it takes root and takes over. 

I am thankful for his mercy today. And I want to learn what it really is to choose trust. How peaceful would it be for us if when we lifted our prayers, our fears, our greatest desires, we knew deep down that they were heard, known and taken care of by our heavenly Father who cares more deeply for us than we know (1 Peter 5:6-7)? With that truth in mind, we really can let go. 

Take comfort in this Psalm:

“You have kept count of my tossings; put my tears in your bottle. Are they not in your book? Then my enemies will turn back in the day when I call. This I know, that God is for me. In God, whose word I praise, in the Lord, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid.” –Psalm 56:8-11