The intention of our prayers speak about the nature of our soul. For example, if our prayers are always about ‘my will done’, then we are praying from a place of me-ism. Many give up on prayer when they sense that God isn’t giving them everything they want. Some of those prayers are valid—health, forgiveness, etc—but others can tend to be quite self-oriented for the promotion of ones benefit, sadly at the expense of another’s benefit.
In 1 John 5, John ends his letter about having confidence in prayer. He writes, This is the confidence that we have in our relationship with God: If we ask for anything in agreement with God’s will, he listens to us. If we know that he listens to whatever we ask, we know that we have received what we asked from him. Read that again.
I’m sure you caught that phrase, anything in agreement with God’s will. It is a curious phrase and one that can lead us to the narrow vision that God works in the contrasting colors of black or white. Yet, the journey of discerning God’s will isn’t black or white but a whole lot of grey. Which leads to the question—what is God’s will? How would one know?
Simply put, God’s will as revealed in Jesus Christ, is one that is marked by an increasingly growing faith in what God can do due to what God has done. God’s will beckons life from not only ones self but also for those around them. God’s will is revealed in the gifts we bestow to the world like love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness and self-control (fruit of the Spirit as found in Galatians). And when we find ourselves praying for our neighbor, enemy, loved ones, and even for God’s guidance in our own lives, that God’s will be done on earth as it is in heaven, as the Lord’s Prayer teaches, we can be assured that God is paying close attention and working…even when we don’t see it, yet!