“…Yet not as I will, but as you will” (Matthew 26:39b).
Jesus came to the hurting and the afflicted. The only true source of godly character comes from being in His presence. In those times of need, He meets with us.
Our problems need to be dealt with in the light of God’s eternal purpose. When Jesus prayed in the Garden, He was not looking for a temporary reprieve from His pending problem. He prayed for God’s eternal purpose and will. That kind of prayer is powerful. E. M. Bounds said, “Prayer is no little thing. It does not concern the petty interests of one person. The littlest prayer broadens out by the will of God till it touches all worlds, conserves all interests, and enhances man’s greatest wealth, and God’s greatest good.”
True prayer, then, is submission to the will of God. One cannot effectively enter into the secret chamber of prayer with any strings attached to his own will. The true man or woman of prayer will enter that chamber with the words of Jesus, “Not as I will, but as thou wilt” (Matthew 26:39, KJV). Comfort is not the issue to the person of prayer. The man or woman of prayer has set his or her sights on the eternal purpose of God. That life will be a holy life. It will be a life given to prayer.
Lord, so often I want my own will to be done. I want my idea to be the one everyone agrees on, my plan to be accepted, and my instructions to be obeyed. How arrogant I have been when I lose touch with Your eternal purposes for everything I do, think or say. Forgive me for continually forgetting that it is not I who live, but You who lives within me! Set my feet upon the rock of Christ Jesus so that I might always seek Your will and not my own!
–Adapted from The Prayer Factor: Adventures with a God who Hears and Answers by Sammy Tippit. This book is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.
Praise God for his jealousy toward you (Zech. 8:1-3; Ex. 20:5-6) that roots out rivals for your love or unfaithfulness on your part. Thank God for such love that will not let you go. Confess times at which you have not given God your undivided love and allegiance. Commit yourself to being exclusively devoted to him. Ask God to give you an undivided heart and life for him.
Pray that God’s Spirit will convince your neighbors or coworkers that his love is for them. Ask him to use you in the process, showing you specific ways to put love into action.