The Divine Dance

Prayer is strikingly intimate. As soon as you take a specific answer to prayer and try to figure out what caused it, you lose God. We simply cannot see the causal connections between our prayers and what happens. But don’t forget this isn’t just true of prayer. All the best things in life have no visible connections. For example, selfless love, love that gets no credit or payback, is completely irrational to our intellectual elites because there is no visible connection between what love gives and what it gets. . . .

The inability to see the connection between cause and effect is intrinsic to the nature of prayer because it is the direct activity of God. Trying to dissect how prayer works is like using a magnifying glass to try to figure out why a woman is beautiful. If you turn God into an object, he has a way of disappearing. We do the same thing when a spouse or a friend consistently treats us like an object. We pull back. . . .

If you are going to enter this divine dance we call prayer, you have to surrender your desire to be in control, to figure out how prayer works. You’ve got to let God take the lead. You have to trust. Then God will delight you, not only with the gift of himself but also with parking places, pajamas, poured milk, and Pathfinders. No one works like him!

— Paul E. Miller, A Praying Life, p. 128

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