I have been really struggling lately to work on my prayer life. Sometimes when I'm faced with a painful circumstance I tend to clam up and try my very best to get through it alone. I don't want to do that. We have the amazing ability to give our burdens to Jesus and talk to God directly in prayer, even if we don't always choose to do it. He wants to be a part of our happy times and our sad times. When I've been neglecting Him for a while there comes a time when I feel Him calling me back. I'm learning to rely fully on God but I still need reminders. I guess I'm stubborn like that.
The other day I heard a familiar hymn at church. Do you love old hymns as much as I do? I also love to hear the stories behind why they were written. What a Friend We Have in Jesus was written in 1855 by Joseph M. Scriven. He wrote the song specifically for his mother, "to comfort her in a time of special sorrow." Scriven had certainly known grief and loss in his life, leaving his homeland of Ireland to immigrate to Canada. Later he lost his fiancee just before they were supposed to be married. His hymn is so positive and sweet, you might never know it was born out of tragedy. It reminds us over and over again to take everything to the Lord in prayer.
What a Friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear!
What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!
O what peace we often forfeit, O what needless pain we bear,
All because we do not carry everything to God in prayer.
Have we trials and temptations? Is there trouble anywhere?
We should never be discouraged; take it to the Lord in prayer.
Can we find a friend so faithful who will all our sorrows share?
Jesus knows our every weakness; take it to the Lord in prayer.
Are we weak and heavy laden, cumbered with a load of care?
Precious Savior, still our refuge, take it to the Lord in prayer.
Do your friends despise, forsake you? Take it to the Lord in prayer!
In His arms He’ll take and shield you; you will find a solace there.
Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised Thou wilt all our burdens bear
May we ever, Lord, be bringing all to Thee in earnest prayer.
Soon in glory bright unclouded there will be no need for prayer
Rapture, praise and endless worship will be our sweet portion there.