Whether it was after praying over a meal or praying in public, from our youth many of us were taught to finish a prayer with amen. That custom followed us to our prayers that we would have in private. It would serve as a conclusion to our prayer and our fellowship with God. Many of us have this habit even until this day. It seems to be a natural conclusion to our communing with God and with His son Jesus Christ. How could this in any way impact our walk in faith you might ask? When we pray we usually try to calm our mind and prepare ourselves to approach the presence of God. It involves making a conscious effort of reminding ourselves of our calling and the importance of it. In that moment during our prayer we tend to refocus our mind and zero in on who we are in Christ and the privilege to be able to approach the throne of God. (Hebrews 4:16) This puts us back into the spiritual perspective, the eternal perspective. What a great place to be! It is the true perspective, but then something happens. That something is the conclusion of our prayer, the conclusion of our communing with God. And it happens with an AMEN.
Now the word isn’t necessarily the problem but it is what the word accomplishes. In the picture of a prayer it may cut off the line of communication with God. It puts a partition between the time that we are mindful of the bigger picture, and our “everyday lives”. That partition is what may lead us to stumble. It is very common to refer to Jesus Christ as Lord. Under what circumstance would a servant not follow his Lord’s leading?
Paul in his first letter to the Thessalonians says that we should “pray without ceasing” (1 Thess 5:17). In a traditional sense this may be impossible as we need to work, go to school, or raise our families, but in the sense that we are listening to the Spirit of God and allowing it to mold us in all that we do, it is more than possible it is essential. Walking in the spirit is also referred to as walking in the light. In our typical lives we are always quick to turn the lights on when we walk into a room. We consider it a natural thing to do. A seemingly simple stroll from one place to another would be quite difficult if there was no light to reveal to us a correct path to walk in and the ability to see obstacles and avoid them. Choosing at any time to leave our “spiritual light” off would derail us from our path and make us less aware of obstacles that may be in our way.
Sometimes it crosses our minds that “I need some time to myself”. “I need to put some space between myself and God”. We don’t phrase it quite like that, but we all have creative ways of adding that space. Perhaps we argue within ourselves that the burden of the Lord is heavy and we need to rest. Our mind deceiving us that we need rest from the giver of rest. If we walk in the light we will never stumble. The only way we stumble is if we are deceived, that for even a moment, we would be better off to walk in the dark then in the light. So every time we say amen from this day forth let’s make sure it’s not an ending to our communing with God, but a reminder that though we walk on this earth we are never far from Him. As Paul says in Colossians 3:2 “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.”
K. Vassilopoulos ©CDMI