“Ok, Lucas, let’s try to go potty!”
“No. I don’t have to go.”
“Well, let’s at least try…”
So we head into the bathroom. My patience in terms of toilet training is waning after 3 pairs of underwear were soaked today. Yesterday was a perfect 10- 100% of bodily fluids made it into the toilet… what’s wrong with today? As I ponder this, my sweet three year old boy looks up at me with those adorable baby blues and says,
“Mommy, can you do it for me?”
“Do what for you, Sweetie?”
“Poop!” (I’m sure there was quite the look of bemusement and confusion that crossed my face as I was trying to decide how best to explain that I cannot poop on his behalf).
“Lucas, you are the only one who can put your poop in the potty. I cannot do it for you. I can help get you to the bathroom and can help you with your pants. I can even help you wipe up and wash your hands when you are done. But I cannot force your body to do its job—that’s just for you to do.”
—Fast forward a few days—
I’m thinking about my prayer life. I’m wishing that I had spent more time praying on a subject that was part of an intentional group discussion. I know that I do not have anything to offer to the conversation because I didn’t specifically ask for help on this one.
Then it hits me. “Stacey, you are the only one who can pray to me. I cannot do this for you. I can teach you how to pray and help you find a place with few distractions. I can answer your prayers and whisper peace in your life after you come to me. But I cannot force you to stop and pray—that’s just for you to do.”
Now please hear me dear sisters… My salvation is sure… salvation is not the question here. However, we are called to live differently after we are saved. The Lord chips away at my self-centered nature and molds me to look more and more like Jesus. I feel like His Holy Spirit is reminding me that I cannot expect for my relationship with the Lord to grow unless I communicate with Him. He is encouraging me through Psalm 17:6- I call on you, my God, for you will answer me; turn your ear to me and hear my prayer. (ESV)
Lord, Thank you for the reminder that you will not make me pray, but that it’s something you invite me to do on my own every day. You promise that you will answer me. Thank you for the fun reminder through my toilet training experiences with Lucas. Continue to encourage me to come to you. May my prayer life take off with consistency and effort just like my young son’s toilet training. I love you Lord! Thank you for the daily grace you bestow on me. AMEN