Submission in Prayer (Part 1)
What are some reasons you pray? Is it simply because you want something from God? Do you only pray when there’s a dire emergency and you want God to get you out of a predicament? Or do you pray so that you can become more submissive to God’s will and less to your own? Let’s find out what the Bible has to say about this matter of prayer.
First of all, prayer bends our wills to God’s will. Rom. 8:26-27, “Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God. “ How willing are you to grow in prayer? Do you desire to bend God’s will to your own? Or do you seek to bend your will to God’s will? It is so interesting to listen to those people pray that all they can say is, “Gimme, gimme, gimme. I want this, Lord! Please provide this for me.” This is what the health, wealth and prosperity people do. They demand things from God and believe that God will instantly gratify their demands.
Many years ago, I met a woman who told me that she would pray and be patient for a long time but when she didn’t get what she wanted, she would stomp her foot and demand that God give whatever it was to her. Her comment was something to the effect that God has a sense of humour and waits for us to throw that tantrum before He will give us what we want. How sad that she still behaves like a toddler and expects God to give in to her demands just because she threw a tantrum. What’s even sadder is that we, too, act like toddlers so many times! It is important for us to realize that prayer is a way of bending our hearts and wills to do what the Lord would have us to do. It’s better for us not to get something we desire if it’s against the Lord’s will than for us to keep demanding it until we finally get it!
Second, prayer is our source of power. We grow spiritually through prayer. Philippians 4:6-8, “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.” Notice, we are not supposed to be anxious over anything! Even in the midst of hard times it is important for us to realize that discipline is just as important in our lives as what the blessings are. We don’t learn as much when we are blessed but we learn a lot when we are disciplined. In these times we must earnestly pray and make request with a thankful heart no matter what the answer ends up being!
The peace of God then keeps our hearts and minds through Christ and it is important that are thoughts are totally on the Lord Jesus Christ! Rom. 13;14, “But put ye on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make not provision for the flesh, to fulfil the lusts thereof.” Interesting how we are supposed to PUT ON the Lord Jesus Christ in Rom. 13:14 while in Phil. 4:8 we are supposed to keep our thoughts on everything that is true, honest, just, pure, lovely, of good report, whatever is virtuous, and whatever is praiseworthy. Who alone is all those things? The Lord Jesus Christ alone is praiseworthy and all the things that we should be keeping our minds on! This week let us seek to clothe ourselves in the Lord Jesus Christ and make NO provisions of the flesh to fulfill those lusts!
To be continued…