Saturday, April 11, 2009

Petitioning God

I was reading a devotional today and a couple of lines really struck me. The devotional was on asking God for help, and was based on I Peter 5:6-7. Are you like me, and find yourself waiting until you have tried every other solution you can think of before going to God and asking for help? This isn't always the case, but most of the time, I go to God and ask for help after I am at the end of my rope, rather than as soon as a problem arises. What pride! I suppose that is why the verse right before we are commanded to cast our cares on God tells us to humble ourselves before God.

The writer of this devotional makes an excellent point about why we pray and ask God for help. It really isn't about getting the solution we want. He says,

"The point is that it really doesn't matter how God decides to solve the problem. By asking God for help, you have admitted that you need Him, and that is what really matters. How God decides to deal with the issue is immaterial, but rest assured He will intervene in the best way possible. God does not want you to depend on a particular solution; He wants you to depend on Him. "

How often I depend on the solution instead of Him! Jesus modeled this for us when he prayed before he went to the cross. The writer points out that the purpose of Jesus's prayer was to connect with his father.

"But what is perhaps more surprising is that Jesus is asking for something He knows He cannot have. When Jesus asks, "Let this cup be taken from me", He is perfectly aware that it is the Father's will for Him to proceed, so why even ask? Jesus speaks these words not to seek a result, but simply to express His anguish and anxiety. Jesus is not asking for a reprieve; He is asking for comfort."

I really needed to read this today. There is one thing I have petitioned God for help with throughout the years that is still a problem for me. Many times now I don't even petition any more, because I think God intends for me to depend on him through the tough times rather than remove the difficulty from me. This is encouragement for me to continue to pray. I need the prayer in order to depend on God! Not that I think God will change his answer (though he could), but because I need His comfort and help.


Stacey said...

Thanks for sharing this...I really needed to read this right now.

Joanna said...

Wow, that's quite a profound thought. You're right, I often don't even pray about something because I think I already know what the answer is. That's very prideful of me.

I'm praying for you, my friend.