Why do we pray “Thy will be done”? The short answer is simple…because Jesus told us to, but isn’t God going to act according to His will and purpose anyway? Scripture tells us that God is love (1 John 4:8), good (Psalm 136:1), holy (Isaiah 43:15), and just (Deuteronomy 32:4). If these things describe God, then it would be completely out of character for Him to act in a manner that is contradictory. Daniel tells us, "Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever; wisdom and power are His. He changes times and seasons;He deposes kings and raises up others. He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to the discerning. He reveals deep and hidden things; He knows what lies in darkness, and light dwells with Him. (Daniel 2:20-22) This good God who spoke the universe into existence in Genesis 1 called all that He made good. The world He created was good and perfect and we should be reminded daily that it was Adam (mankind) that ushered in chaos.
If you look at how Jesus teaches the disciples to pray in Matthew 6, every element of that prayer is completely focused upon God and who He is. He is our Father. He is Holy. Heaven and earth are His kingdom. He is the provider. He is the merciful judge. He is the protector. That prayer highlights the majesty of our creator and just how dependent upon Him we are and how utterly lost we would be without Him. I believe the phrase “Your will be done” is better understood from the words of Jesus in Matthew 26. While in Gethsemane He prays 3 times, “if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me.” and the passage culminates with, “the spirit is willing, but the body is weak.” Jesus knew what lay before Him on the cross, and this is one of the places I believe that the humanity of Jesus is put on display for our benefit. After He prays 3 times for any possible avoidance of what is to come, He finishes the statement with, “yet not as I will, but as You will.”
Our problem when we pray is that we have a limited point of view. Many times, we rob the Almighty of His rightful spot on the throne of our hearts. Most of our prayers are extremely self-centered. Don’t get me wrong, it is not a bad thing to pray for blessings and good things to come our way. But when God acts in a way that doesn’t line up with what we petition for, what is our response? We say things like, “God didn’t answer my prayers” or “I must not have had enough faith.” God answers our prayers; the answer just isn't what we pray for sometimes.
What I ask you to consider is this: Usher in the Kingdom of God by bringing your will in line with His. When proclaiming that the Lord’s will be done, ask Him to bring your wants, desires, thoughts, and purposes into perfect union with His. Let Him change your perspective. Allow yourself to step back from the situation and for the Spirit to open your eyes to what God is doing. This has definitely been a struggle for me during this time of house hunting. It is easy to get discouraged, but when I step back and take a look, I know that the Lord is taking care of my family. His timing is perfect and how stupid would I be to assume I know what’s best for me!
Philippians 2:13 - “for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.
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