This Pen Is Like a Woman

Posted by Worldview Warriors On Saturday, August 16, 2014 4 comments

by Nathan Buck

When I was recruiting to help staff a telecom company, they would interview with an age-old sales question. They would put a pen on the table in front of a candidate and ask them to, “Sell me the pen.” The candidate would then struggle on the spot to come up with ideas of how to demonstrate their best sales skills, in relationship to making this hiring manager want to buy this pen.

I will never forget one candidate who picked up the pen, thought for a moment, and then proceeded to describe the pen to the managers as if it were a woman. He described its curves, it exterior features, and its ability to smoothly communicate whatever needed to be said. After completely exhausting the analogy and almost losing the Hiring Manager to hysterical laughter over a very straight and very simple Bic Stic type pen, the interview was over. The candidate did not get the job, but I certainly admire his creativity.

In our relationship with God, prayer is often overcomplicated (or oversimplified) depending on how you look at it – by having a similar “sales” like attitude. We start to think of prayer kind of like that interview, where we have to “sell” God on why our request is important and why He should respond. All the while, we miss the fact that we have painted ourselves into a corner. When prayer is just a transaction, then we expect to put in something and get something out. We put in creative words and petitions, or try really authentic begging and justifying, and expect that if we do that well enough, we will get what we want from God.

The next few weeks, some of the Worldview Warriors bloggers are going to be writing about prayer. I encourage you to read these posts and explore the topics from each writer’s perspective this month.

In the meantime, read Psalm 1 and ask yourself how the pictures in that Psalm change your thoughts about what prayer does.

And read Romans 12:1-2 – consider if prayer is an act of worship, and if it is, how do these two simple verses change your view of what prayer is?


Charlie said...

Awesome post, Nathan. I constantly hear people telling me that "prayer doesn't work", and that statement alone demonstrates a lack of understanding of what prayer is. They treat it as a process, not as a means of communion with Almighty God. Prayer is not about getting God's blessings or his approval. Though there are times to do that. Prayer is about the relationship we as born-again Christians have with our Savior and Lord. Good stuff.

nathan buck said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
nathan buck said...

Charlie, agreed. Its perfectly fine to ask, God wants us to ask. But we miss alot and will be disappointed if that is all our relationship with God consists of.

It's a struggle to see prayer as anything other than a transaction when in our busy lives, it becomes one more thing to check off our list. I know I am way too distracted and busy, when my prayers shrink down to my 'wish list' for the day.

Jason DeZurik said...

Thanks for posting this Nate.

I'll be discussing this a bit on Do Not Keep Silent tomorrow night.