“Wrapped up with oneself”, “inward-looking”, “egocentric”, “self-absorbed”, “self-interested”, and “stuck on oneself.” Those are some few but good definitions of our generation. Everything must turn around us, even God. We dictate what we want and we expect a swift and good answer. Some churches and preachers call it: “Name it and claim it”, which means, there are some words, prayers, and behaviors that will force God to do whatever you want, and when you want. Those people forgot that they are not God, and God is still sovereign. He will do what He wants, and when He wants, period.
10. Prayer must be done according to God’s will
Because of that we need to know some aspects of prayer that are very important and will help us to understand what it means to pray according to God’s will.
1. God wants us to pray – Prayer is part of God’s plan for us. Throughout the whole Scriptures we see that teaching. Even in the life of Jesus our Lord, we see that He prayed until the end.
2. God wants us to pray according to His will – That means we should know what God is willing to give us and ask for those things. Here it is a very well known text that tells us just that: “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us — whatever we ask — we know that we have what we asked of him. 1John 5:14-15.”
3. God will fulfill His promises – God promised, in His Word, many things for us, and we should find those promises and ask them. Here it is what the Bible tells us about this: “For no matter how many promises God has made, they are “Yes” in Christ. And so through him the “Amen” is spoken by us to the glory of God. 2Corinthians 1:20.”
4. God will answer what He wants to answer – We cannot forget that God is God. He will do whatever He wants to do. This is why Jesus taught the disciples to pray: “This, then, is how you should pray: “‘Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Matthew 6:9-10.” Even though we have Bible verses to back up our requests, God is still in control of His answers.
5. God will honor a submissive spirit – It is not just knowing what to ask, or when to ask, it is about how to ask. The attitude counts. Are we willing to submit ourselves to God and His will, even when we do not like it? This is what Jesus teaches with His example: “Going a little farther, he fell with his face to the ground and prayed, “My Father, if it is possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as I will, but as you will.” Matthew 26:39.” and later “He went away a second time and prayed, “My Father, if it is not possible for this cup to be taken away unless I drink it, may your will be done.” Matthew 26:42.” We can ask anything to God that is according to His Word and promises, but the attitude in our hearts should always be the attitude of the leper who came to Jesus: “A man with leprosy came to him and begged him on his knees, “If you are willing, you can make me clean. Filled with compassion, Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man. “I am willing,” he said. “Be clean!” Mark 1:40-41.” It was not what he said, it was his attitude, how he asked: he came, he begged, he knelt, and he said: “If you are willing, you can make me clean.”
My brother and sister, God wants us to pray, He wants to answer our prayers, He wants to see our spirit and attitude as much as our theology and more than our oratory abilities. So, keep praying, because He is a good and gracious God, and He will answer your prayers.
Have a blessed week,