When my kids were younger, we made chocolate chip muffins almost every Saturday morning.
I had the luxury of raising my kids before the gluten–free, non-GMO, organic craze hit, so I could make, without guilt, Betty Crocker muffins. I know, so awesome. I can feel your jealousy. Or your judgment, it’s hard to tell the difference sometimes.
But I digress. Back to muffin making.
Chocolate chip muffin mix was a staple in my pantry. (Don’t judge. I feel you trying not to. You can do it.)
Some days I would ask the kids to help me make muffins just because I liked spending time with them.
They would line the muffin cups with paper liners. Then we would mix all the ingredients together, spoon them into the cups, and wait for them to bake.
One day I was spending some time with the Lord really struggling with prayer.
Specifically why we pray.
It seems at times like my prayers don’t make a difference.
It was the struggle of—if God is just going to do what He’s going to do—why do I pray?
And in the middle of this conversation, the Lord started talking to me about muffins.
He reminded me of all the times I had made muffins for my children (and it is quite a few…I still feel no shame over it…)
Sometimes, I was making muffins because muffins were just what I was going to make for breakfast.
Other times, I had asked one of the children if they wanted to help me make muffins because I wanted to do something with them. If they said yes, we had muffins. If they said no, we didn’t have muffins.
Then, other times, my kids approached me and asked me if we could make muffins.
Most of the time I said yes because, well, who doesn’t want muffins??
Sometimes I had to say no. But if they had not asked, we would not have ever had muffins on those days.
As the Lord is showing me all this, He tells me that prayer is a lot like making muffins.
Sometimes, there are things He is going to do whether I ask or not—it’s just what’s for breakfast that day.
Other times, He invites me to partner with Him to accomplish something through prayer.
If I say yes to His nudge and enter into prayer, then His kingdom will come in that area— muffins will be made.
If I say no, if I ignore His invitation, then whatever He is inviting me into partnership over will not happen, there will be no muffins.
Then, other times, I approach Him and cry out for something, and He moves simply because I asked.
He had not planned on muffins, but because I asked, He is going to make some. And sometimes, no matter how I beg or plead or cry, the request I make is not going to happen.
I am not getting muffins.
Sometimes the answer is no.
There is no formula for prayer because it was never meant to be formulaic.
Prayer is relationship. Every time, every situation, is an opportunity for my relationship with Him to grow.
Every time I enter the kitchen with Him and talk to Him while we line the muffin pan and mix ingredients, every time I sit with Him while we wait on the muffins to bake, my understanding of Who He is and how He loves deepens.
We grow closer in the process.
When He tells me I can’t have muffins even when I really want them, I get to grow: I get to learn to love when I don’t get my way;I get to learn to trust when I don’t understand. Every time I enter the dialogue with Him over muffins, I make room for Him to become bigger and greater in my life than before.
So go buy some Betty Crocker chocolate chip muffin mix, turn on some worship music, and tell the kids you and Jesus are making muffins. It will change your life.
Word of the Day:
Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. (Colossians 4:2,NIV)
Jesus, teach me how to pray. Not just for answers but to find You in the process. Help me to know You in a real way—to lay down all my attempts to figure You out and get results. Create in me a longing to know You more than anything else.
Author: Brooke Kireta