Last night some friends and I watched “Facing the Giants”. I’d wanted to see it when it first came out in theatres but never got around to it. I wouldn’t say it’s an Oscar-caliber performance, but it was definitely entertaining and had some powerful messages.
The lead in the movie is a high school football coach whose job is on the line after yet another losing season. Plagued by challenges at both school and home, he finds himself losing faith and questioning what God is doing, and why his prayers for success both on and off the field are seemingly going unanswered.
In one scene, a man comes to visit the coach in his office. He shares with the coach a parable of two farmers who both prayed for rain, yet only one went out and prepared his field to receive the rain. Which farmer, asked the man, do you suppose showed more faith? Obviously it was the one who took action in preparing to receive what he asked for.
That particular scene made me think about how often I pray for something but do not prepare myself or my heart to receive it. Part of that preparation often involves waiting on God’s timing, something that I struggle with. My prayers are sometimes timid, as if I’m afraid to ask God for something really big because I’m afraid He won’t come through. I don’t think it’s that I doubt that He CAN come through, but rather, that He desires to come through for me. I suppose experiencing heartbreak over the past couple of years has contributed to this timidity.
How can I expect my faith to strengthen if I do not allow God the opportunity to work in a mighty way? I want to pray more boldly, and to act more boldly, in circumstances where God calls me to act. I need to not only pray, but prepare for the rain as well.