This is what the Lord says, he who made the earth,
the Lord who formed it and established it—
the Lord is his name.
Call to me and I will answer you
and tell you great and unsearchable things
you do not know.
Sometimes we turn prayer into something much smaller than it is. Sometimes we treat prayer as if it were the spiritual equivalent of throwing a penny into a wishing well. We say some words and hope our wishes will come true. Or we may turn prayer into a rote exercise. Prayer becomes something we do as a performance because we think it is what is expected of us by God or by others. Or we may treat prayer like a to-do list we create for God. We hand God our list of what we think needs to be done and walk away, hoping our “prayers” will be answered.
But prayer is not the making of a wish, or an empty ritual, or a to-do list for God. Prayer is the conscious act of seeking contact with the true and living God. It is nothing less than this.
Prayer is direct contact with God. And because this is the essence of prayer, prayer is truly a radical, breathtaking and potentially life changing activity. It is an activity that God urges us to do. “Call to me,” God says. The One our heart longs for, the One we seek, is eager to hear from us and eager to respond.
There are no qualifiers here, no complications, no hoops to jump through. God gives us a clear invitation: “Call to Me.” Call to the One who made the earth, the One who formed it and established it. The God of all, our Maker, is that available to us.
And when we do make contact with God, when we call on God, God promises to respond. “Call to me, and I will answer you,” God says.
To pray is to come as a creature to our Creator. It is to come with a teachable spirit before the One who “formed and established the earth.” We do not seek contact with God to instruct God or to placate God, but to have conscious contact with the Love that is at the heart of prayer.
We call to God. And the true and living God answers us. God answers us, not by approving our rituals or scrambling to do the items on our to-do lists. God answers us by revealing to us “great and unsearchable things”.
This is the essence of prayer. God calls to us, inviting us to be in relationship. We respond and call on God. And God answers, revealing a Love beyond all we could imagine.
I am astonished by your generous invitation,
by your passionate urging,
for me to call on you.
In spite of my fears and uncertainties,
I am eager for contact.
And, so, I call to you.
Thank you that you hear me.
Thank you that you will respond
by showing me great and unsearchable things.
Sit quietly for a few minutes, reading and reflecting on the text from Jeremiah 33. With a humble, teachable spirit, allow yourself to seek conscious contact with God by simply calling on God. Stay open to whatever God may show you.