Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Praying for the will of God

For the Christian, knowing and doing God's will is the path to real joy. Here's a wonderful prayer by Scotty Smith. May it encourage you in your pursuit of God's will.

In his heart a man plans his course, but the LORD determines his steps. Proverbs 16:9

Sovereign Father, I am currently facing some important decisions about the next several years. Therefore this Scripture brings me great peace, humility, and joy. I am so thankful you are vitally engaged in determining and directing every one of my steps… that you’re working all things together after the counsel of your will… that you’re working in all things for your glory and for our good. You open doors no man can shut and you shut doors no man can open. Indeed, you’re no mere life coach, you’re the Lord of all things… including me.

Many years I labored under the arrogance and anxiety of assuming that if I prayed hard enough and long enough… that if I was really walking in the Spirit, I could know the specifics of your will for my life, well in advance of decision making time. My assumption was that if I was in your will, life would be enjoyable, pleasant and hassle-free.

If I bought the right car, it would never break down…If I bought the right house, the roof would never leak… If I married the right person, we would never disagree… If I went to the right college I’d get the right job and life would be all-right... If I sent my kids to the right school they would never act out and would probably end up on the mission field. Through a better understanding of the gospel, you’re rescued me from these self-centered self-serving pragmatic notions. Thank you!

Father, I certainly realize we must work hard to make good plans, based on the revelation of your will in the Scriptures. It’s critical for us to seek and heed, wise prayerful counsel of good and godly friends. But help us to live with more confidence that Jesus is the Good Shepherd, not a consulting partner… a very present Lord, not an absentee landlord… the reigning King, not an impotent bystander.

Because of Jesus, I’m confident your will is being done… on earth as it is in heaven. Because the gospel is true, I have peace as I enter into this next chapter of my life. Write new stories of redemption and restoration, to your glory. So very Amen, I pray, in Jesus’ exalted and trustworthy name.