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Pray Like Every Moment Matters

Conversations with God

Chrystal realizes that some people feel uncomfortable or awkward about prayer, thinking that their words need to sound like formal liturgy. She longs to help people think differently, to think of prayer as a simple, natural conversation with God. “Sometimes we can be fooled into thinking that our prayers depend on finding the right words or having more faith than other people. But those are lies of the enemy. Are you praying based on who God is and what He can do? Or are you limiting your prayer based on what you can see or what you can make happen on your own? If you are limiting your prayers, don’t,” she exhorts. “If we don’t pray or if we delay our time to petition God about the details of our lives, we might be delaying His provision, His intervention, or His favor. Let me challenge you not to wait. Don’t act as if you have time. Make it your focus and your priority to talk to God this week and to talk to Him often … don’t wait until tomorrow.  He’s available to talk to you right now,” Chrystal says.

Pray without Ceasing

No one can pray around the clock, of course. Chrystal says the exhortation from 1 Thessalonians 5:17 to “pray without ceasing” means that we should pray about anything anytime. She offers an example: “When we’re dating, we never want to stop talking to that person. We’re always engaged and involved.” She says just as we want to share everything with someone we love, so we benefit by sharing our hearts and the details of our lives with God. Chrystal concedes that some believers find prayer dull. “… it always baffles me a little bit when people claim that prayer is boring. What? If it’s boring, then you might not be doing it right! God cares about everything in your heart: your anger, your sadness, your questions, and even whatever it is you might be whining about. Everything in your life – every moment of your day, every worry or concern, every giggle, every victory -- matters to God.” 

She recalls how devastated she was when her middle son suffered a birth injury. “I took my son to the altar at church every Sunday for seven Sundays in a row, begging God to heal and to make a miracle out of this son.” God chose to answer her prayers with slow improvements through the years, and her son still has residual effects. Chrystal says she learned to seek and trust the Lord with her every care, worry - even anger - and found Him plenty.

Components of Prayer

Chrystal makes an acronym of the word PRAY to help believers cover the essentials of prayer modeled by The Lord’s Prayer of Scripture:

P= Praise and Thanksgiving. Gratitude, she believes, determines our outlook. “Cultivating a heart of thanksgiving goes a long way in determining how you will respond to whatever comes your way,” she states. “Choosing to be grateful, instead of slipping into complaints and negativity, can shape the way your mind and heart interpret your circumstances. God instructs us in His Word to give thanks not only because it’s the right thing to do, but because we are blessed in the process. Thanksgiving changes us.

R= Repent, seeking forgiveness from God. Mere remorse is not enough. Chrystal believes that we must keep short accounts with our Creator. “No matter what you’ve done, where you’ve been, what you’ve said or how you said it, Jesus didn’t die for you based on your behavioral record. He loves you because He loves you. We repent because we don’t want to hurt Him. We repent because we want to remain in open, unbroken fellowship with Him. We repent and obey because we want to please Him.  But He always loves us.”

A=Ask, presenting your requests to God. Chrystal doesn’t encourage holding back. “You are not bothering Him. He likes to hear from you. No need to fake the funk and request what you ought to pray for. Think of something you really want to pray for. He knows your heart anyway, right?” While advising that we discern the difference between needs and wants, she also encourages us to be completely honest with God about both. 

Y= Yield, surrendering to God. “Surrender,” she states, “doesn’t mean you don’t work, it just means you don’t move ahead of God and what He has clearly asked you, convicted you, or empowered you to do. The evidence of our lack of surrender is often seen in our cycle of prayer, emotions, and actions. We pray. Then we get up and don’t act like we believe God is handling what we laid at His feet. What I want you to hear is that even though it feels scary to surrender, God is trustworthy. When you yield, God is faithful to give you what you need to obey and remain faithful.”

About Chrystal

Chrystal introduces herself on her website this way:

“The first thing you should know is that writing specifically to tell you about myself is hugely unnerving for me.  So here’s what I’d tell you if I had a minute-to-spin-it. I’m a …. Jesus girl. Wife. Mom. Writer. Speaker. Singer. Homeschooler. Bibliovore. Techie. Hopeless Romantic. Starbucks Junkie. Foodie. Fashion Newbie. Runner Wannabe. Sweet Tea Connoisseur.…and a lover of all things that refresh.” 

“I am a wife to a gentle giant named Jessie who had no idea what he was getting into when he asked me to marry him, bless his heart. We have five children – we each gave a girl to each other on our wedding day – and we’ve added three Jessie ‘look-a-likes’ since we said, ‘I do.’ We’ve got college-life and kindergarten happening simultaneously under our roof and while we are a little frazzled, we wouldn’t have it any other way.”

“I consider myself blessed to be the mother in an awesome family and also to be a daughter in an awesome family. I am the first born of a man and woman who have shown me what it means to love Jesus, love their family, and work hard to establish a legacy. I am the sister of siblings who value the legacy they’ve been handed and take their own callings and destinies seriously.”

“And I take my faith seriously…I am a sinner saved by grace who is grateful to be a daughter of the King. I am a benefactor of second chances and stand amazed that Christ Jesus lives in me. I am a diamond in the rough who is glad to be a work-in-progress in the hands of a Master. I am learning everyday what I believe about my past, present, and future and am compelled to share my lessons and experiences so that God’s work in me may be an encouragement to others."

“I’m a ‘used-to-be’, corporate, career-minded, bean-counter, on-the-path-to-big-bucks, single gal…turned homeschooling, bread-baking, garden-growing (or at least attempting), cloth-diapering, mommy-blogging, family-minded dame...turned work-at-home-mom who shamelessly uses paper plates, keeps a stock of frozen pizzas on hand, strives for small victories in her battle with the #fatdemon, and is simply in the thick of figuring out how to keep the plates spinning and the balls in the air.”

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