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Ask The Father

Ask The Father

14 August 2010

Today’s Reading: Jeremiah 16-17; Psalm 96; John 16

Scripture:

23 You'll no longer be so full of questions. "This is what I want you to do: Ask the Father for whatever is in keeping with the things I've revealed to you. 24 Ask in my name, according to my will, and he'll most certainly give it to you. Your joy will be a river overflowing its banks! (John 16:23-24 MSG)

Early in the process of training his followers, Jesus had taught them to pray to the Father, “Your will be done in earth as in heaven.” Now he told them again, “Ask the Father for what is in keeping with the things I have revealed to you – according to my will – and he’ll most certainly give it to you.”

The theological debate on this matter of “Ask the Father for anything in my name and he will give it to you” ranges from “I can just ask for anything I want he will give it to me” to “I have to pray a prayer that is exactly and precisely according to his will or he won’t give it to me.” There are even some who have the attitude, “Why do I even need to pray at all? God knows what I need!”

The personal, devotional application I see in this is two-fold:
1) There are some things I know God wants me to pray for and about because they are in his heart and his purpose:
That none will be lost. That all will come to faith in Christ. For peace. For unity among Christ-followers. For his kingdom to be established on earth as it is in heaven. For the poor, the oppressed, the hopeless. For justice.
2) There are some things I know God has revealed to me about me (and to you about you!). Those things have to do with his plan and his purpose for our lives. God has given you and me specific revelations, desires, even prophecies in some cases. We need to review those things he has revealed to us and then intensify and focus our prayers that God will bring them to reality.

I’m ready for some joy-overflowing answers to prayer! How about you?

Prayer:

Father, please forgive me for my prayerlessness concerning the things that are important to you – things you have revealed. Please forgive me for short-sighted and selfish praying. In the words of Mary, “May it be to me according to your word.” In the words of Jesus, “Your will be done in me.” In the words of Jim, “Please don’t let me miss out on doing and becoming all you have in mind for me.” Amen.

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