by Jasmine Tosseth-Smith, NACWE Spiritual Coordinator
“Oh Lord, why?” Why this? Why me? Why now? I am in awe of the way God works in us. As I write this section of this book, I literally asked God these very questions this morning. I came to Him and asked why? Why this and why not that? Financially. I am not where I want to be. I cannot keep my fridge stocked full the way I would like. Bills are paid, but it is usually at the point when the cut-off notice arrives. And I feel like I am failing.
This was happening to Moses in Exodus chapter 5. Moses and Aaron had gone before Pharaoh with their first attempt at asking him to set the Israelites free. Not only had Pharoah shot down their request, but he had made them work harder. Previously the straw needed to make the bricks was provided to them, but now Pharoah made them get it themselves. You can only imagine that Moses felt like a failure and as if he had let the people down.
God Hears Your Prayer of Complaint
And so Moses came to God with his payer of complaint in Exodus 5:22 – asking “Oh Lord, why?
- How many times have you stood looking at your life and asked God “Oh Lord, why?”
- How many times have you stepped out in faith to do what God has called you to do and instead of getting better, it looks like that move only made things worse and you have asked, “Oh Lord, why?”
- How many times have you let the rejection of others bring you to your knees and make you ask, “Oh Lord, why?”
- How many setbacks have you had that have caused you to ask, “Oh Lord, why?”
Friend, God hears our prayers, even our prayers of complaint.
God Responds to Your Prayer of Complaint
Even as I prayed my own prayers of complaint this morning, I felt compelled to research prayers of complaint and I found this beautiful gem of a reminder in Exodus 6. God reminded Moses: “I am the Lord, the God who makes promises and keeps them.” He reminded Moses, and therefore reminded me, that He was the God of my fathers and forefathers and just as he had made promises to them, I would see Him as the God who keeps his promises. In Exodus 6:4, 5 and 8, He reminded me that he is concerned about my burdens and my plight and that although in past seasons I have known Him as the God who makes promises, this season would be one in which I would know Him as the God who keeps His promises.
God Uses Your Prayer of Complaint in Power
Prayers of complaint are heard and move the heart of God. God knows and understands that we only see and know in part and that we are weak and our resolve fails us. He does not fault us for praying to him with our complaints. Instead of condemning us, He reminds us who He is. He doesn’t reject our prayer; He uses it to give us cause to celebrate, by bringing us back to the truth of who He is. Crown Rocker, that is the power in the Broken Prayer of Complaint, it sets you up for truth. It sets you up for a moment to encounter your Father who is listening and cares. It sets you up for a meeting with the one that not only made you the promise, but keeps it. Did you feel the power in that?
From my book: Tears of the Kings Daughter: Broken Prayers Devotional Journal
Jasmine Tosseth Smith
NACWE Spiritual Coordinator
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“For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And who knows but that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?” Esther 4:14