What does it mean to wrestle with God? I know I’ve been taught there are certain things you just don’t bring up in prayer like how much you want this new car or how badly you want to date that girl. Somewhere there is a pre-written list of things God wants you to have and if you desire anything else you’re wrong, if you pray for anything else you’re sinning. We take the lunch line mentality towards our good God, here’s what on the menu either take it or go hungry.
Is there such a thing as wrestling with God?
After watching the way most Christians act the answer seems to be no. Which is fine, except that we have this thing called the Bible and its purpose is to more fully reveal who God is and guess what? In it people wrestle with God. A few observations from wrestling with God…
- We don’t wrestle merely for things we want, we wrestle for things we believe God doesn’t want us to have.
- We strategize before we pray.
- We seek out alternatives, trying to please both God and ourselves. Sometimes, instead of pursuing the original desire, we try to choose something else that we think God will be more willing to give us.
- We pray, whatever your will is, and then back off quietly; lying to ourselves that we never really wanted it all that badly in the first place.
Maybe some of those are not blatantly evil options. But are they honest? Are they vulnerable?
The Christian culture has condemned this thing called religion as a dead option empty of any power to bring us closer to God. Religion is based on getting it right, hopefully on the first try. When we pray/wrestle/fellowship how often do we reach for the right words rather than the true ones? No matter how awful the truth may be, no matter how dark, no matter how unchristian it may sound, that’s what God wants to hear.
He doesn’t love you because your right, he loves you because your you. He died for the you that you are, not the you you think you need to be.
Wrestling doesn’t happen with someone whose at the other end of the room. They have to be close, close enough to feel their breath, their strength. Wrestling is intimate.
What do you think, should we wrestle with God?