Three Pastors and a Lineman


A story is told of three pastors standing outside of a local church, discussing the proper way for a person to pray.

The first says, “The only proper attitude is down on one’s knees.”

The second disagreed, saying, “I believe the way to pray correctly is with outstretched arms and upturned eyes.”

The third pastor said, “No, no, no, a person should pray with eyes closed and head bowed contritely before the Lord.”

Just then, a lineman descended from a utility pole nearby and walked up to the arguing pastors.

He said, “Pardon me, gentlemen. I couldn’t help overhearing your conversation. About a year ago, I fell from one of these poles and on the way down managed to get one leg wrapped around a single utility line.

The thing I want to tell you is, I noticed in hindsight that I did my best praying ever, hanging by one leg, upside down, staring at the asphalt 25 feet below me.”

The lineman didn’t stutter, did he?

Our proper attitude when we pray to God is one of desperation.

And sometimes, like when we are hanging upside down from a utility line far above the earth, we can clearly sense our desperation.

Sometimes, though, it seems like we are walking on easy street and we have things under control, no need for God, we got this, etc.

But the truth is that we are in desperate need of God daily. We need his guidance. We need his forgiveness. We need his strength. We need his love. We need his peace. We need his…

We depend on God every day for every thing, whether we believe it or not.

Romans 11:36 (ESV) says, “from him and through him and to him are all things.”

You see? It says our origin, our purpose, and our destiny are found in our God. He is completely sovereign.

So the proper attitude when going to God in prayer is recognition that He is our Provider and that we are utterly dependent upon him.

If that’s how we approach him, then I doubt if He cares too much whether our eyes are closed or our head is raised.


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