My reckless prayer

Originally published Sunday, 26 April 2015.

By an act of faith, Abraham said yes to God’s call to travel to an unknown place that would become his home. When he left he had no idea where he was going. By an act of faith he lived in the country promised him, lived as a stranger camping in tents. Isaac and Jacob did the same, living under the same promise. Abraham did it by keeping his eye on an unseen city with real, eternal foundations—the City designed and built by God. Hebrews 11:8 (MSG)

Last year I chose the word, "enough" as my #oneword365.

It was a safe word. Much like the word my parents made us memorise as kids so we could let them know if something was wrong without having to come right out and say it.

In many ways “enough” was a declaration after 2 years of my husbands' cancer treatments that we were done. In other ways it was a searching to be satisfied with what I already have and who I am right now. 

Enough was many things but it wasn't a challenge. It didn't make me shake in my boots or question my sanity.

The word I've chosen this year scares me. It feels like a challenge to God. But the worst kind of challenge. It feels like a gasping for breath when you're submerged under water. It feels like a prayer.

It's the kind of prayer that feels like asking God to scald your skin. It's the kind of prayer you'd think would be better left unsaid. 

It's a hard and holy prayer.

After all, my ongoing prayer of, “take me to the place of YOUR greatest blessing” hasn't meant that my life has been like meandering through a spring meadow.

But the truth is I'm tired of playing it safe with God. As Brennan Manning said, 

“When I look at that God, the God of Abraham, I feel I am near a real God, not the sort of dignified businesslike, Rotary Club God, we chatter about here on Sunday mornings. Abraham's God could blow a man to bits, give and then take a child, ask for everything from a person and then want more. I want to know that God.”

It's not a safe prayer but I pray it to a safe God. (tweet this)

I whisper it to a Father who knows my heart better than I know my own face in the mirror. As CS Lewis wrote about in the Chronicles of Narnia, 

“He's not safe, but he's good.”

The other night as I wrestled with what word to choose as my #oneword365, what group of letters would best describe this feeling of uprising, change, metamorphosis I'm feeling God calling me too. 

I fell asleep without a word for 2015.

On waking I read this poem by Sir Francis Drake, the second person to circumnavigate the globe and a man who history paints with strengths and weaknesses, an adventurer in the 1500's as he departed by ship for South America: 

Disturb us, Lord, when

We are too pleased with ourselves,

When our dreams have come true

Because we dreamed too little,

When we arrived safely

Because we sailed too close to the shore.

Disturb us, Lord, when

with the abundance of things we possess

We have lost our thirst

For the waters of life;

Having fallen in love with life,

We have ceased to dream of eternity

And in our efforts to build a new earth,

We have allowed our vision

Of the new Heaven to dim.

Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly,

To venture on wilder seas

Where storms will show Your mastery;

Where losing sight of land,

We shall find the stars.

We ask you to push back

The horizons of our hopes;

And to push back the future

In strength, courage, hope, and love.

This we ask in the name of our Captain,

Who is Jesus Christ.

I decided to look up the word this poem had me returning to again and again:

Disturb: (Verb) to change the position, arrangement, or order of (something)

And something shifted in me. So I prayed about this word. I talked with Xylon. And I had peace that the one word I’d choose to sum up who I want to be or how I want to live, all year long would be disturb. 

I chose this word – disturb – because I can feel God is doing things in me. I can feel there are changes coming and that I will have a choice to stick with the status quo or to disturb what is comfortable, and reach for the something more God is offering.

I don’t know where God will take me this year, how he will use me or what experiences I’ll cling on to his hand through but I know I feel a little like Abraham as I pray, “Disturb me, Lord.” 

I don’t know where God is leading me too but I know if I keep my eye on him I’ll get there just fine. 

Ponder: If you had to choose just one word to sum up how you want to be or live in 2015 what would it be? Join the #OneWord365 community here.

Prayer: Lord, give me courage as I go into 2015 to be the kind of person you want me to be. (tweet this)

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- This was orginally published on my site in January 2014. To read more devotionals like this go to