Not My Will
“I’m going to ask the Father what He wants me to pray for,” I said to a grandmother who came to the altar for prayer one weekend. Her teenage granddaughter had been in a serious car accident and was fighting for her life. The prayer God asked me to pray turned out to be a very short one. In fact, I only heard one word: “peace.” That was it! As I prayed, I repeated that one word over and over again until I sensed an “Amen” in my spirit. I encouraged her to find scriptures on peace and to meditate on them and memorize them during the week.
A few days later, the granddaughter passed away. The grandmother rushed to the hospital room. When she saw her granddaughter, she noticed a piece of paper pinned to her granddaughter’s hospital gown. Written on it were the very scriptures about peace she had been meditating on! Suddenly, even in the midst of great loss, peace filled the room and the grandmother’s heart. One word made all the difference because it came directly from His heart. God knew exactly what she needed.
By asking God what He wanted me to pray for, I was essentially asking Him, “What is Your will in this situation?” When Jesus gave us the Lord’s Prayer as an example of how to pray, He included the phrase, “Your kingdom come, Your will be done.” God’s will is perfect. When we pray, we must be about His will, not our own. Often, we find our prayer life stuck as we pray out of our own will, our own reasoning, our own understanding and our own emotions; but if we allow God to direct our prayers, we will begin to see the power, presence and provision of God released in unimaginable ways.
Jesus said, “I can of Myself do nothing … I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me” (John 5:30, NKJV). Jesus was only about His Father’s will. This wasn’t always easy. In Gethsemane, Jesus struggled with His coming crucifixion, but He still managed to pray, “not my will, but yours be done” (Luke 22:42, NIV).
Just like Jesus, we need to be about God’s will when we pray. When we don’t know His will, it’s always best to ask Him. At other times, when we do know His will, but it’s hard for us to accept, we must submit to Him and say, “Your will be done.” Praying His will is always going to work out better for you than trying to pray your own.
We can take comfort in knowing God makes all things work together for our good (Romans 8:28). He knew that grandmother was going to need His supernatural peace, and He knows exactly what you need. His will works for your own good and for the good of those you pray for. Ask Him what He wants you to pray for, and then submit to His perfect will.
Prayer is exhaling the spirit of man and inhaling the spirit of God.
~ Edwin Keith
Lord, what do You want me to pray for today? I want to be about Your will, not my own. Even when Your will doesn’t make sense to me, I know that in the end You make all things work for my good. I trust You completely. Your kingdom come, Your will be done. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
- Before you begin to pray, either for yourself or for someone else, stop and ask the Father how He wants you to pray.
- Be confident and speak what He tells you, when He tells you, to whom He tells you.
- Submit all your prayers to His will.
O Lord, hear my plea for justice. Listen to my cry for help. Pay attention to my prayer, for it comes from honest lips. Psalm 17:1 (NLT)