Have you ever been in a place where you called out “Why?” to God? Have you ever wondered if those kinds of prayers are okay? I am delighted to introduce you to my friend, author and speaker, Janet McHenry. Today on the blog Janet answers that question as she discusses The “Why” Prayer.
There’s a Book Giveaway so be sure to read to the end!
(There are affiliate links in this post, meaning, if you click through and make a purchase, I may receive a commission (at no extra cost to you).
The “Why” Prayer
One of the most heart-touching stories that arouses deep emotion in us is when we learn of a baby abandoned by its parents. A fireman walks out the front door of the firehouse one morning, only to find a newborn swaddled up in a blanket sitting in a car seat.
There’s a note tucked under the straps: “Please take care of my son.”
A helpless child–abandoned, deserted, forsaken.
Of Jesus’ ten prayers the most heart-wrenching one is probably the one when he, too, was seemingly abandoned. Hanging on the cross, he cried, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46).
The word forsaken here takes on a hard note of finality. The Savior who “had to be with his father” on a continual basis was now alone on the cross.
Jesus’ prayer is one with which we can truly resonate.
Why did I lose my job, God?
Why did my sister Nan die of cancer?
Why did you allow ALS to take Dad so soon?
These “why prayers” are tough. They hurt. And even if we hang on to our faith, we may feel bad because we’ve prayed them.
But Jesus did. And his story shows us that his abandonment led to our adoption—as children of our Father in heaven.
Think about it. When a baby is abandoned, it seems awful, the worst thing that could happen to a child. But that baby’s abandonment then actually answered the heart cries and prayers of a set of parents who could not have a child.
Abandonment leads to adoption. Abandonment is not the last word. Our Father has the last word. And while we may not always find out the answer to our Why? prayers here on earth, we can trust that he will make meaning and purpose as we look to him in faith.
It’s okay to pray Why? Jesus did. So we can, too.
© 2018 Janet Holm McHenry
About the Book The Complete Guide to the Prayers of Jesus: What He Prayed and How It Will Change Your Life Today
This book is the only comprehensive guide to the prayer life of Jesus.
While many Christians only know of the Lord’s Prayer, we learn in Janet’s book that prayer was essential to him and that he had a rich, fertile prayer life while he was on earth. With warmth and keen insight, Janet takes you on an engaging, vivid journey through the 14 recorded prayers Jesus prayed as well as his teachings on prayer and his prayer practices.
No matter our backgrounds or ideas about how, when, and why we should talk to God, we can learn from Jesus’s simple, vulnerable examples. As we follow his example of prayer and take our problems to him, we will, like him, grow closer to the Father and find strength for our everyday challenges.
Purchase a copy of the book here: The Complete Guide to the Prayers of Jesus
About the Author
Janet McHenry is a national speaker and the author of 23 books, six of those on prayer, including the best-selling PrayerWalk and her newest, The Complete Guide to the Prayers of Jesus: What He Prayed and How It Will Change Your Life Today (Bethany House). A former journalist and educator, she now writes full time from her home in the Sierra Valley, where her husband is a rancher and where they raised their four children. She coordinates the prayer ministries at The Bridge Church in Reno, where she annually organizes a prayerwalk for the schools. Janet enjoys connecting with folks on social media and invites others to contact her through her website, www.janetmchenry.com.
Jesus modeled prayer throughout the Bible. Leave a comment below telling us which of Jesus’ prayers is your favorite and why and you will be entered into a drawing to win one copy of Janet’s book, “The Complete Guide to the Prayers of Jesus.” You could also share this blog post on Facebook or Twitter then comment here to tell us where you shared it and you’ll also be entered into the drawing. The winner will be selected at random and announced next Tuesday, September 4th (Monday is a holiday), here on this post. Continental United States only.