Can we please add "socks" to the prayer list?

About a year into my marriage, when the excitement & blur of being a newlywed had begun to fade just a little, I began to become annoyed with some small nuances & habits of my precious husband.  To his defense, my man had no idea I was miffed by his actions. 

One of the things that was bothering me so much was inside out socks.  Yes, you read that correctly.  When I would take the clean laundry out of the dryer to fold & his socks were inside out it would make me CRAZY.  I’m talking about flipping out in my own head.  Didn’t he know what an irritation it is to have to turn his socks right side out as I folded them?  Shouldn’t a grown man know to turn his socks right side out before they get washed? 

My own expectation, that my husband had no idea I even wanted, was leading me into craziness.  This craziness inside my head, hung out there for several weeks before I finally took action.  Here’s how I fixed the problem.

I prayed.

One day as I was folding clothes, I just decided to pray about this sock situation that was causing me so much agony week after week.  Honestly, it had to be the Holy Spirit’s prompting because my nature would be to throw a big fit about things needing to be done a certain way.

I said, “Lord, could you please just make my man turn his socks right side out before he puts them in the laundry?”

That’s all there was to my “super holy” prayer.

Guess what?  The next week his socks were right side out!  I couldn’t make this up if I tried.  That man’s socks have been right side out every week for the past 22 years!  I never said a word to him about his socks.  I only talked to my Father about it!

This was the beginning of my learning that praying for my man is important, but more importantly, it was the beginning of God teaching me that prayer changes every situation.   It changes circumstances, it changes perspective & it changes my heart.  Prayer is not a magic wand or a manipulative tool.  It is however the process our Father has given us to claim the power He has to bring a heavenly reality into our earthly reality.

I love the scripture in Ephesians that says:

We do not wrestle against flesh & blood, but against the principalities, against powers, against rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in heavenly places. {Ephesians 6:12}

This verse tells us that everything we deal with on earth has a connection to what is going on in the spiritual world.  Even socks.  If I am loving, joyful, peaceful, patient, kind, gentle & self controlled, {Galatians 5:19-26} then a silly frustration over socks won’t take hold of me.  But the only way I can be this way in the face of such non-sense of inside out socks is to take it to the Lord.  On my own I am none of those things listed above.  My human nature is in direct opposition to God & is unloving, grumpy, anxious, unkind, agitated & selfish.  But when I realize that I am wrestling against the ruler of the darkness for control of my mind, I am more able to take every thought captive for the Lord & destroy everything that rises up against God’s ways. {2 Corinthians 10:5} So when I take my crazy thoughts about socks captive for the Lord & realize that I am wrestling against an enemy who wants to use small nuances to cause friction in my marriage then I am spiritually connecting myself with God’s team & telling my enemy he is defeated.

Your real enemy wants you to ignore the spiritual reality of becoming more like Christ.  Satan wants you to focus in on the physical reality of small annoyances that will become the downfall of your soul as they gain your focus. 

So what’s a gal to do who’s drowning in socks {or any other problem}?

Determine what the real struggle is ~ Is the real struggle physical?  There may be some part of it that is.  A sickness or an ailment that has left you physically weak can be a great deterrent to keeping your mind focused on God.  However, He is bigger & stronger than even that.  More than likely though, the struggle in any relationship is one that is being fought in spiritual places over issues that need to become focused on God & not focused on the issue itself.  Ask the Lord today to help you determine what the struggle is & how to re-focus it on what He has already done to win it for you. {2 Corinthians 3:16-18}

Determine who your real enemy is ~ The people in your life are not your real enemies.  No matter what you are feeling about a certain relationship, sin, which is spurred on by the father of lies, is the enemy.  The devil wants you to focus on a physical circumstance rather than a heavenly reality.  Our enemy has already been defeated by the power of the cross & we only have to ask our Father for the power to stand up to the schemes of the devil.  Satan is real & persistent but our prayers will shut him down. {2 Thessalonians 3:3}

Determine Who can re-focus your thoughts ~ We are weak on our own, but in the power & strength that God offers us we can re-focus our hearts & minds where they need to be.  God has promised that He will be there when you call & that His grace & strength are enough to help you.  We can keep on going because of the hope we have in Jesus & the fact that we have access to His throne through prayer.  The God of the universe wants us to communicate with Him.  {Jeremiah 29:13}

Ask the Lord today to help you determine what the real struggle is & how to re-focus it on what He has already done to win it for you.  Ask for eyes to see areas of your life where the enemy is trying to destroy you & your relationships.  Ask God to give you the strength to focus on Him.