One-a-Day...for the Heart: TMI
TMI. This contemporary acronym means “Too Much Information”. Have you ever gotten that in a text or email or conversation? It’s an overshare of information that is inappropriate, boring, or unnecessary. A casual, “Hi, how’s it going?” can turn into a 45-minute one-sided conversation, leaving you with details about Aunt Susie’s third-cousin-twice-removed who tripped over the tree root of a sacred weeping willow tree in the Indian graveyard bordering the family’s farm, on the far side of a gas well that Uncle Joe agreed to, after being hornswoggled by a shady band of out-of-towners who moonlighted as a bluegrass band named Baloo Grass Class. How’s that for TMI? I realize it’s a bit far-fetched, but you get the idea. TMI.
God never tires of us, in fact, He created us to have an up-close-and-personal relationship involving active, ongoing, daily communication with Him. When we talk to the Lord, there is nothing we cannot tell Him about or ask Him for. 1 John 5:14-15 (NKJV) tells us, Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.
“Anything” can include a pretty broad range of, well…anything! “According to His will”—now that defines “anything” a bit more precisely. As we grow in our knowledge of the Word of God, we get a better understanding of His ways, His desires, and His will for life situations. It’s easy to bombard the Lord with every single detail of a problem, forgetting firstly to give Him thanks for all the blessings, answered prayer, and protection He has already given us. We quickly give Him TMI—inappropriate, boring, unnecessary details that He already knew before we even put on our sackcloth and ashes and fell prostrate before Him on our bedroom floor.
Prayer is simple. Don’t make it difficult. When you pray, don't babble on and on as people of other religions do. They think their prayers are answered merely by repeating their words again and again. Don't be like them, for your Father knows exactly what you need even before you ask Him! (Matthew 6:7-9 NLT). See that? Our Father knows exactly what we need even before we ask Him. What He loves is a childlike faith expressed by running to Him as our Abba (Hebrew meaning “Daddy”) Father to help us with those things that concern us. Sometimes as a child, I couldn’t even tell my daddy what was bothering me. But if I sat by him or heard his voice, I knew everything was going to be all right.
There is something so calming and comforting about sitting in silence before the Lord. Understand that He reads our hearts and knows them better than we do. How wise are the words of Matthew in chapter 6, verses 5-6 (MESSAGE), And when you come before God, don't turn that into a theatrical production either. All these people making a regular show out of their prayers, hoping for stardom! Do you think God sits in a box seat? Here's what I want you to do: Find a quiet, secluded place so you won't be tempted to role-play before God. Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you will begin to sense His grace.
Simple and honest. No TMI. Those are probably the most effective prayers we can pray!