This morning, because my wife isn’t around (Oh how I miss her delicious cooking), I had to prepare breakfast myself. Automatically, I was going to go for something simple … toast bread, butter and a splash of honey (don’t laugh). I was in a haste! So I opened the loaf of twist hard-dough bread (unsliced) and “dived” the knife into the bread, slice it and put in the toaster.
To my utter surprise, it was hard using the knife and the bread kept crumbling. How come … it’s supposed to be hard-dough? I had to use more energy to cut the bread. The slices were very rough on the edges and looked unpleasant. Ah, what is going on???
Folks, I was using the blunt edge of the knife! The reason why I had to apply more energy in slicing the bread was because I was cutting the bread with the wrong side of the knife. That is the same reason why the bread kept crumbling (even though hard-dough bread has a firm appearance).
I was cutting the bread, using the knife but not getting the desired result. Isn’t that what happens with our prayer lives? I am praying but not getting the results. I am praying to God and praising God but not having a Praise Report. I am applying all the scriptures Pastor gave us but I am not having any testimony!
Lessons I learnt from this “Slicing of Bread” experience
1. Be still and know that He is God. Hastily approaching God and hoping to have a "Microwave Moment" with God and dash off, will not yield productive results.
2. According to Samuel Jonathan, "Activity is not the same as Advancement". I was actively cutting the bread but not making progress or getting the desired outcome. The activity of prayer may not yield the result or outcome you are expecting ... especially if you are praying amiss!
3. Efficiency does not always translate to Effectiveness. You can be efficient in prayer but not be effective! From the bending of the knee, closing of the eyes and putting the hands together to the head-bopping, finger-snapping, tounge-speaking "mannerisms" of prayer, you might be efficient! The question is, are you being effective? Are you praying in the direction of God? Are you praying the Will of God? Is your prayer focus in accordance with the Agenda of Heaven? Your intimacy with God will determine your sensitivity to God (and His Will).
4. Are you using the blunt edge of the "knife"? You can complain about the lack of results and testimonies or reaccess and review your approach. According to Samuel Jonathan, "If the approach is wrong, the outcome can never be right".
5. Be careful of the accolades, awards and applauds. The loaf of twisted hard-dough bread had a firm appearance but easily crumbled! It is easy to have the "form of godliness" but have the power lacking. Do people admire the way you pray; do you get a lot of "Amens" anytime you preach; do you always get commended and described as a very strong Christian; are revered as a Pastor, Reverend, Priest, etc? As Christians, it is very important that don't get carried away with the compliments and remain focused (and grounded) in the rudiments of godly living. Remember; the position does not make the person. The person makes the position.
6. If you are willing to learn, God is willing to teach. From the very simple and regular routines of everyday life, God can teach great and might principles that will strengthen you in Him. You will not have to sign up for any course or programme. Your willingness to learn automatically registers you for God's life lessons.