The prayer God answers when I think He’s not listening

{image: sborisov / 123RF Stock Photo}

{image: sborisov / 123RF Stock Photo}

Last week, I was even more glad I’m a movie junkie than usual. Because one movie—one of my favorites for kids—taught me the prayer I’ve been saying to God whenever life gets in my face and tries to make me cower: The Incredibles.

What prayer am I talking about? It shows up toward the end of the movie, when Mr. Incredible catches the neighbor kid on his trike, staring saucer-eyed at the superhero. Mr. Incredible asks what this child wants, and he answers, “I don’t know. Something AMAZING, I guess!”

Yes, folks. That’s my favorite prayer. Straight from the mouths of babes in a movie.

And from the mouths of anointed men of God, too, it turns out.

David, a psalmist, warrior, and man called one after God’s own heart, had this same kid-on-trike awe and expectancy of God. Psalm after psalm proclaims the vastness, greatness, majesty, wisdom, power. . . that everything about God is superhero-awesome.

“What do you want, David?” I can almost hear God say.

“Well,” David may have said, “enemies pursue me, I’m a marked man, I don’t know where my next meal will come from or if I’ll find an ally in the next place I stop to rest. So, I don’t know. Something AMAZING, I guess!”

Which God did, over and over again, causing words like this from David:

He reached down from heaven and rescued me; he drew me out of deep waters.
He rescued me from my powerful enemies. . .
He led me to a place of safety; he rescued me because he delights in me.
—Psalm 18:16-19

I needed that kind of amazingness last week. As I tucked in my 11-year old, brushing a lock of hair from her face, that’s when I discovered the lice nits. My mind spun into fear. I was that kid on a trike, looking up wide-eyed at God, saying “I don’t even know what to say, but I need this pestilence to be squashed. I need strength to do all that will require on top of what already stretches me thin. I need joy, even in the and-now-I-need-to-stay-up-picking-out-lice-until-11-p.m. moment that just pounced on me.

I need you to do something AMAZING, I guess.

I need you, God, to be my something—my someONE—amazing. To be more than Mr. Incredible could ever be, bring more good than I could ever imagine, fill days with more stretched-minutes than I can fathom.”

I needed something amazing at 10 p.m. on a school night.

And GOD did it.

There was one, single live louse, it turns out. ONE. We picked through our whole family’s hair multiple times, vacuumed, sprayed, treated scalps, picked the nits out of this one daughter’s hair for days. But NOBODY else in my family got it. Ten years ago, the last time it showed up in my house? We all went down like dominoes with the damn bugs! This time?

One louse. Three days of work. And they’re gone.

He was my Mr. Incredible last week. God answered my crazy, weird, movie-inspired, kid-on-a-trike cry for help. He vanquished what might have been a major foe in a family of six. He did that.

He answered my prayer. The one I pray when I know the crap’s going to hit the fan and I will be outnumbered and life is looming large.

“Laurie, what do you want?”

“I don’t know, God, something AMAZING, I guess.”

Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. —Ephesians 3:20

We just have to show up on our trike, and expect something amazing.

What do you need God to do something amazing with today? Will you take the bold step of simply asking Him?


Linking up with Jennifer Dukes Lee today at #TellHisStory

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  1. says

    Oh Laurie! So fun to have you in community with us at #TellHisStory. What a treat… So sorry about your single louse. One louse is one too many, yes?

    Praying you have an AMAZING rest of the week. xo

  2. Cindy Fincher says

    Laurie, Love this! Yep! God is incredible and He cares about us enough to get rid of the bugs 🙂 And I love your real life prayer. 🙂 Blessings,

  3. Karen V says

    Thank you, you make my day easier with your wisdom and experiences. Another amazing day in my life. Hugs

  4. says

    I love this and will quote it. It’s like when spouses are struggling and can’t see their way out of it, they could pray with hope, “God, I need you to do something AMAZING in this relationship!” I think that’s the kind of prayer for our relationships that He delights in answering. Isn’t that the kind of thing we like to share with others, too? The AMAZING. Thanks so much.

    • says

      It’s certainly the kind of prayer I’ve seen Him delight in answering. And it goes with my favorite New Year’s resolution: look up toward God in heaven, and say, “surprise me.” 🙂