Bible Ballistics: BBs #241 Really Trusting???
We talked last time about forgiveness and what Jesus said about it in the “Model Prayer”. Jesus calls us to forgive, and He also talks about our focus and emphasis in prayer. Prayer is our ‘life-line’ with our Father God Almighty, and His Son Jesus Christ, so we need to understand what scripture teaches us about prayer, rather than the popular leanings of our day. Proverbs gives us a beautiful picture of an accurate attitude towards prayer.
“Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. 6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6
How different from popular rhetoric in Christendom that tells people to just “name it and claim it”, or just “speak positively”, or God wants you to be “happy, healthy and wealthy” and if you are lacking those things then you must not have enough faith (See Hebrews 11:32-40)! Well my friends, scripture has a different approach to prayer, and it’s not a blanket manipulation tool to control God! Prayer is to be our “life-line” to know and live in the center of GOD’S will NOT our own! We’re called to:
Trust in the LORD with ALL our heart—
NOT to trust in OUR OWN understanding—
Acknowledge GOD in all our ways NOT self—
Trust GOD’S direction of our path NOT our own—
So what are you doing about prayer? Let’s dig a little deeper into what scripture tells us about prayer. Let’s go back to the “Model Prayer” and we see what Jesus Himself tells us about the pattern for every prayer:
“After this manner therefore pray ye:
Our Father which art in heaven,
Hallowed be thy name.
10 Thy kingdom come,
Thy will be done
as it is in heaven.” Matthew 6:9-10
We are to pray! And as we continually pray, we are to seek God’s will in any given situation or request. We are to ask, and seek, and knock until God answers, reveals and/or opens the doors that accomplish HIS will in us and those we pray for. Prayer isn’t a “heavenly slot machine” where we just put in our “coins” of prayer and keep pulling the handle until we “win” God over to our will. God forbid!!! Why have we who claim His name, forgotten that HE is God and not us? Our heart should be to seek HIS face and desire to see HIS will in and through the circumstances and people that HE has placed in our circle of influence.
“And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: 15 And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.” 1 John 5:14-15
People use the example of Elijah’s prayer for the rain to stop, and it stopped; and then his prayer for it to rain and it rained; yet often fail to check out why he prayed that way. But scripture tells us why.
“And it came to pass at the time of the offering of the evening sacrifice, that Elijah the prophet came near, and said, Lord God of Abraham, Isaac, and of Israel, let it be known this day that thou art God in Israel, and that I am thy servant, and that I have done all these things at thy word.” 1 K 18:26
Elijah obeyed God in his praying about the rain. Do you get it? Elijah prayed according to the “word” that God spoke to him. How are we to pray? According to His will, and His Word. Our prayer life is to be totally focused on God’s will—God’s will in all the things that burden our hearts—for those who are grieving, those who are suffering, those who are dying, those who are lost without Jesus!
When we truly “trust” God in “all” our ways, and the ways of those around us, we can release the burdens of our hearts into HIS hands. YES, asking for those things we think are pleasing to Him, but always with the caveat of “Thy will be done”; because if it pleases God, it should please us. NO, we won’t always understand, but we can always “TRUST” our Lord God Almighty to do what is best for His purposes, His glory and our good! We can trust the one who loves us and gave Jesus to pay for our “wages of sin”, which was, is and always will be “death” without the gift of God’s salvation through the blood of our Redeemer Jesus! And when we are His, we are His, and HE cares about everything that comes to us and those HE has placed in our circle! We can trust Him with it all. Do you? Or are you dictating to God? Are you willing to trust it all to HIM? None of us do it perfectly right all the time, but may we ever strive to trust HIM more, and stop trying to twist God’s arm to do our will!
“Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. 37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:25-39
PRAY ON!!! We win!!!