‘Amen’ Requires Surrender
I’ve inverted my prayers for more than a decade. I start them with “amen”—which means “so be it”—and in doing so, I’ve learned to set my agenda down right at the start. It’s an acknowledgement that God can move how he wants in any given storyline; I commit from the beginning of my prayer that I won’t get in his way or question. Then I list and talk and ask for all that I normally pray about. I whisper:
Amen. You sell the house. Dear Jesus.
Amen. You move her heart. Dear Jesus.
Amen. You heal that body. You open the door. You provide. Dear Jesus.
And in one syllable this word reorients me, calibrating me with a God whose covenant he will never break. So be it. I can’t fix anyone, I gain nothing from wringing my hands. By inverting my prayers and saying “amen” right away, from the beginning I acknowledge his sovereignty and my surrender.
This mindset toward prayer dates as far back as the prophets. In the passage above, Jeremiah acknowledges the supernatural with his declaration of so be it. If it (treasures and Babylon) happens, amen! He says, “Amen! May the Lord do so!” (v. 6).
But if it doesn’t happen, amen! God is still on the throne. For them, it involved captives and a Temple, but my it can be about healing or a relationship. Amen helps me lay down it in complete surrender.
Beth Guckenberger is the author of Start with Amen: How I Learned to Surrender by Keeping the End in Mind. She and her husband Todd serve as co-executive directors of Back2Back Ministries. Adapted from Start With Amen: How I Learned to Surrender by Keeping the End in Mind© Beth Guckenberger (W Publishing Group), used by permission.