Over 20+ years ago I still remember a coffee and prayer time in La Jolla, CA with a co-worker (Fred Wevodau) that radically changed my thinking. The Holy Spirit used a simple prayer to serve as a catalyst in better understanding strategic praying to advance the kingdom. Prayer has been a vital part of my life since becoming a Christian as a teen. But on that day I was convicted that more of my prayer time needed to be aligned with what God was doing and desired to do. Fred prayed we want to co-labor in what you are doing. Not just ask you to bless what we think we should be doing for you. Some of you may be thinking is that it? That changed your thinking? Please hear me out and keep in mind the biblical principle that where two or three are gathered He is there. The Holy Spirit was working in my heart.
My view of full time ministry was that I worked for God. I saw my role as that of sales rep and God was the CEO. He had his office and I had my territory. My territory at the time was the campus of UCSD. He was just a prayer away. Sure the results were up to God but I had to do my part and work hard. The more hours the better. For years I averaged 60-80 hours a week. The prayer with Fred was the beginning of a paradigm shift. Colabor with what God is doing? Rather than work for God I began to work with God. Rather than check in with him each day and then go at it I checked in with him and followed. I begin to understood the truth of getting involved with what God is doing vs. asking Him to bless what I was doing.
As I became more aggressive in my prayer time my passion for Jesus grew. As a result I felt God more in each moment. I began to taste the thrill of fellowship with the Lord that was more amazing than anything I had experienced. Instead of prayer being something I did from obedience that I could check off my list it became a delight. In addition to my daily quiet time I began to spend every Monday with the Lord. Every summer and winter I would take a week long prayer retreat. The more time I spent with Jesus the more I began to experience John 15. Communion with the Lord was not just something I did because I knew I should but it bacame like a passionate fire burning in my heart.
A result of the paradigm shift is that I resigned as sales rep. I don’t miss that role. The one of co-laborer is much easier. The results are bigger and better. What difference does that decision make to my life today? As a wife and mom of children I can’t pick up and spend a week alone with the Lord as I did when I was single. Nor can I take off one day a week by myself. But I am very grateful for the years I had to lay a foundation that I am still reaping from today. Under extreme pressure and stress I am still tempted to take control but if I listen the Holy Spirit will remind me of the truth in 2 Corinthians 6:1-10.