I have been thinking a lot about my prayer life lately. It certainly is not as vital as I want it to be. I wonder if I have been side-tracked in how I pray, or perhaps in my goals in praying.
Recently I read an article in an on-line magazine where the author called out Christians on the way they prayed for this last election. One of the things he said hit home for my own prayer life. He said that we should not have been praying just to get a result in the election. We should have been seeking God’s will, His heart, His desire, and His presence.
In other words, we should have been doing what Jesus told us to do in Matthew 6:33:
“But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you.”
As I read the article and as I was reminded of this verse from Jesus’ Sermon on the Mount, I felt the Holy Spirit’s conviction that I have been drifting in my prayer life. I have been seeking outcomes rather than God’s will and heart. I have been giving God my plans and asking for His blessing on them.
I know that we can, and we should, bring our hurts, our wounds, our desires, and our dreams to God in prayer. I know we need to lay those things at His feet. John in his first letter reminds us that we can have a confidence in coming before our LORD and asking … but John adds a caveat that I need to focus on more as I pray.
“Now this is the confidence we have before Him: Whenever we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.” [1 John 5:14 HCSB]
That caveat is that whenever we bring anything before the LORD, we need to remember in the end, His response will be “according to His will.” Amen.