A solid foundation is everything.
If someone asked ‘on what have you centered your life?’ Would you say – Career? Children? Finances? There was a time in her life when Betsey Fredericks would have circled all of the above. Like many who fall into the paces of daily life, Betsey placed her trust and energy into the things she thought would mitigate her fear and angst.
In Betsey’s words, “You don’t know how strong your house is until there is a storm that takes it down.” It was through her husband’s impending layoff, the challenges of raising children, and making the decision to quit her job that Betsey began to rebuild her life around God. In a time that was so overwhelming that it became nearly impossible for her to pray, God used the prayers and the spiritual direction of other Christians to heal Betsey of her fear and worry.
Time and reflection has given Betsey perspective on what she calls her previous method of ‘vending machine prayer.’ “I would give God my prayer, and I expected him to give me what I asked for – just like an item I selected from a vending machine,” Betsey explained.
The Lord’s promise to hear our prayers, forgive our sins, and heal our land is dependent upon us first humbling ourselves, earnestly seeking the Lord, and turning from our wrongdoing. This is not vending machine praying where we insert our petitions, often selfish requests, and then go about living our lives unchanged. The Lord expects more from us before He answers our prayers.
Today Betsey communicates with God through intercessory prayer, humbly confessing her faults, acknowleding the blessngs bestowed upon her, and looking in faith towards His Will being done in her life and around the world .
Changing her expectations of prayer has given Betsey great freedom. The freedom to trust God with the different pulls of life: career, family, and finances, while still separating her identity from them. Her newfound trust in God as a solid rock is a tangible example of faithfully sowing seeds through prayer. As Betsey’s prayer life has grown, her identity in Christ has followed. For Betsey, prayer is no longer a request with expectations for her desired result. But a chance to be fully vulnerable and broken before The Father.