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STORY: Prayer Makes Me Worse

Friday, 11am.

Dear journal,


I know I'm not perfect to my family, but I'm seen as one of the nicest people at our little church.


However. I think I just blew all of that. One of my friends from our church, a real estate agent, is helping us list our house. Our young family needs something with a little bit more room.


He came to see our house. The chat was nice until he asked if we could pray before he came in to look at our house. Everything went down hill from there. As we were praying I felt like God said, just be honest with him, show him everything. So every time he asked, "What's in that room? Are you comfortable sharing what's in there?" I swallowed my pride and opened the door.


By the end of it I was snapping at him. I was rudely defending myself. I even insulted his own toy-strewn yard. Behind the doors, my house is a mess and it needs a lot of work before it can be put on the market. I've let it get out of control.


At the end I mumbled, "I don't get it. it seems like whenever I pray I get irritable. I'm sorry." And we parted awkwardly.


God, when I pray, why does it seem like I become a worse person? It's the same thing with my family. If I don't pray in the morning it seems like I can just zone into my own stuff and I snap less at my kids. It seems I complain less at my wife.


It just seems like prayer makes me a worse person. Why should I even try?


Friday, 8pm.

Dear Journal,


Second time writing in you today. My real estate friend just called after dinner. He asked if we can meet up for drinks. I'm a little worried. I think he's going to say he'd rather not be my agent. I wouldn't blame him.


Friday, 12:52am (After midnight)

Dear Journal,

Third time writing in you today. I met up with my friend and it didn't go at all like I thought. My friend said thank you for letting him see into my home and my life. He said he recognized a lot of my responses in himself too. He said he thinks he knows why we get irritable when we pray.


He said it's because prayer is meant to make us holier, and the first step of making us holier is uncovering our sin. He then asked me if I'd like to do a Bible study together to help us be better fathers and husbands. But not only that, he said we could do it while he helps me clean out some of these rooms. He said he'd help for free!


God, help me root out whatever it is in me that makes me rotten. Help me open my doors to my friend and to you, and help me clean out the rooms. Then help me be able to gracefully do the same for him.


---

Sometimes after I pray or spend time in worship, I'll find myself even more quick to snap at my loved ones. This was discouraging until I realized, maybe it's because prayer is helping me be holier by first exposing my sin. Only when we expose our sin can we start to clean it out. Work on me, God.


When have you seen something unsavory come out of you? How could God be working on that in you?


Raw Spoon

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These BLOGS are usually inspired by messages I (or friends) feel we have heard from God. This is the nature of our God. Listen for how he may be speaking to you.

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