walk in the word
13I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God that you may know that you have eternal life. 14And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. 15And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him. -1 John 5:13-15
People often say, “But James, there are a lot of promises in God’s Word that seem like blank checks: “Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it” (John 14:13-14).
Study that more closely. Every promise in Scripture that seems to be unqualified is, in fact, qualified. And here are the qualifiers:
Jesus said, “If you abide in Me and My words abide in you, ask whatever you will and it will be done for you” (John 15:7). So everybody’s like, “Ask whatever you will and it will be done for you!” But that’s not the whole picture! When you get yourself to a place of true submission to God, you can ask whatever you want to because you won’t ask for dumb stuff.
How often do you ask God for dumb stuff? Or just demand to have your own way. God doesn’t rule by committee. Effective prayer is about submitting and aligning my will with God. Here’s how that happens:
When we pray, “Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:10), we’re praying, “God, we just long for it to be like it is in heaven. I want it in my life for it to be like it is in heaven where what You want happens on time every time.” That’s an effective prayer of submission.
Journal: Why is submission in prayer the key to effective time with God? What does submission mean in my life right now?
Prayer: Father, continue to remind me that prayer isn’t only about asking You for things You already know I need, but about my deep need to be in harmony with Your will, eager to agree with Your way of doing things even before I know how they are going to unfold! May Your will be done in my life as it is in heaven! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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