by Michael Maciel
You know the feeling. Everything’s going your way, you’re getting things done, the items on your to-do list are helpless before you. It’s exhilarating. Life is never better than when you feel like you’re making progress. Whatever was holding you back no longer does. You feel like like a racehorse bursting out of the starting gate, and the finish line is yours for the taking!
And while we don’t feel like this all the time, it’s important that we take advantage of it when we do. It’s in those moments when the life energy within us is surging forward that we want to redirect our focus to our highest aspirations—our prayers.
The best prayers are spontaneous. They arise as an expression of our deepest longings. But prayers, like good poems, rarely work as a first draft. More often, they are a work in progress. Sometimes, we pray so that we can find out what it is that we really want. So they evolve. They build slowly (like a good poem) and as they do they slough off their ambiguities, their contradictions, and their headiness. What remains is clear-cut and to the point. What remains is powerful.
As we build our prayers, their energy increases, and that energy will break through whatever is standing in the way.
Prayer is one part of a triad: Prayer, Meditation, and Blessing. Prayer is the act of giving voice to our deepest longings. Meditation is listening for the echoes of our expression, a way of feeling our way through the corridors of our inner life. Blessing is when we project the energy of our prayer into the world. Blessing is a movement of power.
So it is precisely when we are feeling powerful that we need to tell God what we want. Not what we hope for, but what we absolutely, unequivocally, will-not-accept-anything-less-than what we want. Spirit responds to hot, never to lukewarm.
This is not to say that you can’t pray when you’re down. You should pray no matter how you’re feeling. That’s part of the discovery process I mentioned before. Praying when you’re feeling low is comforting. It makes you feel like God is hearing you, that you’re not alone in your time of trials. But when you pray on the upswing, all the energies of your life work for you. They drive home the point. They tell God what you want, not what you don’t want. What you want has power. What you don’t want simply does not compute.
Be a force for good in the world. Pray powerfully. Look God straight in the eyes and tell Him exactly what you want. Don’t flinch. You flinch, you lose. It’s a simple proposition: do you want the world to change or not? Stand up, know what you know, speak what you know, be what you know, and God will do the rest.