My Life with God

The Selfishness of Prayer

photo-1518655061710-5ccf392c275aYesterday, I wrote on prayer and our commitments of praying for each other. Today is related but with a different approach. I’ve discussed this with many people:

Is prayer selfish?

As in, “When I pray for myself, am I being selfish?”

I think only you and God can answer that.

If our ideas of prayer are only to give God our requests, we have a narrow view of prayer. It can seem self-focused, because we’re not letting prayer be all that it is intended to be. Prayer is for gratitude. It’s for listening. It’s for sitting and simply savoring God’s presence. It’s humility and correction. It’s truth-seeking and revealing.

It will always slip into selfishness every now and then, because we will always struggle with pride. But as we pray authentically, we think of ourselves less. We think of ourselves in a much broader context, and we trust God to define that context.

And prayer becomes so far away from selfishness.

If you struggle with prayer and the feeling of selfishness in it, don’t walk away. Keep praying. Keep asking God to call out your pride and help you get rid of it. Commit to becoming more sensitive to it.

Be honest with yourself and with him.

You’ll learn a lot about yourself as you set yourself aside.

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