In his book A Praying Life (I recommend it to you), Paul Miller states the opposite of a childlike spirit of trust is a cynical spirit. He points out that cynicism along with defeated weariness questions the goodness of God, or at least His willingness to act on our behalf.
Do you struggle with believing that God really does hear your prayers and will answer?
“Our personal struggles with cynicism and defeated weariness are reinforced by an increasing tendency toward perfectionism in American culture. Believing you have to have the perfect relationship, the perfect children, or a perfect body sets you up for a critical spirit, the breeding ground for cynicism.”
How to ward off cynicism?
- Get to know God as He is. Heb. 11:6 …He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.
- Hope in the Lord. Rom. 10:11 …whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.
- Humble yourself and approach Him with a childlike spirit. I Pet. 5:5 …clothe yourselves with humility… God is opposed to the proud, but gives grace to the humble.
- Have a spirit of thankfulness. I Thess. 5:17-18 Pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances.
- Ask God for the gift of ongoing repentance. Acts 3:19 Therefore repent and return, … in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord..
- Keep looking for Jesus happenings in everyday life. Psalm 23:4 …for You are with me…
Our only hope is to follow Jesus as He leads us out of cynicism.