“And the people stood by, watching, but the rulers scoffed at him, saying, ‘He saved others; let him save himself, if he is the Christ of God, his Chosen One!'”
(Luke 23:35 ESV)
Do we sometimes pray like these rulers?
What I’m thinking about it this… do we sometimes pray without belief? With no faith? No trust?
Like this: “You won’t do this, God; but I’ll ask just to see.”
What these rulers didn’t know, didn’t believe, is that he WOULD save others. He WOULD rise from the dead (thus saving himself).
God is at work on our behalf and he hears and answers our prayers. In this case, suggesting that this ‘snarling’ of the leaders, as they watched Jesus on the cross, was a kind of prayer (the way some of us pray… just for discussion sake), it WAS answered.
He did save others, by dying and rising. So, if this HAD been a prayer, a faithless prayer, it was not answered according to their terms, it was answered according to God’s will – in His way, In His time.
See, I think that a prayer, in belief, in faith, may be specific (like for $X by Y date for a certain need). But we must trust God enough to know that His answer will be good. And that no matter what His answer is (like $Z – – which is way below X), we truly rejoice in it (Hab. 3:17-18)!
Because we really trust that God is good.
Someone asked me why I don’t worry about money the way I once did? I replied that after what I’ve read in the Bible and what I’ve experienced in my life (READ BIG SUMMER STORY), I’d be a fool to not trust.
I pray in faith that God has our situation under control.
How? How have you moved from fear to faith?
Through what Willard called ‘the training of the heart and mind’ through dwelling with God in Scripture and prayer. Dwelling with Him in deepening relationship empowers me to trust Him to produce the right fruit, in and through me.
So, are we training our hearts and minds?
How many of our prayers are unbelieving prayers?
“God, please help us get deep enough with you that our prayers are in your will before they arrive in our mind.”