Impacting Cities & Communities thru Prayer
A Community of Prayer Champions, Praying Churches, Prayed-for Communities
In this foundational prayer Jesus told us to pray for God's will to be done. Our sin and the subsequent fall has spun our world and our hearts out of the will of God. Only God can restore us to the way things ought to be. This is one of the most powerful aspects of prayer. But there is much more to praying for God's will than simply mouthing these words in a rote prayer. Let me suggest two critical factors of consistently praying in obedience to this directive from Jesus, Discernment of His will and Desire for His will.
To pray for God's will, I must learn learn to discern God's will in various situations. That begins in exposing myself to God's word. God powerfully and personally reveals Himself to us in the Bible. As we apply ourselves to learning Scripture, the Holy Spirit speaks to us.
A more important facet of discerning God's will is the transformation of your mind, indeed your entire character. Romans 12:2 says, "Be not conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is the good, acceptable and perfect will of God." God makes us more and more like Him. The verse just before calls us to present our bodies to Him as a living sacrifice. Transformation is a process that takes a lifetime. But every day of His work, often painful to our pride and self-centeredess, produces character, confidence and spiritual maturity. God shapes us in His image, in the likeness of Jesus, so we can know and understand His will. Through this process we come to desire His will. We learn in practice what we usually know superficially, that the best thing that can ever happen is what God desires whether it is what we want or not. Our joy increases exponentially as we come to delight in his will.
I need to note one other blessing that comes as we learn pray for God's will. He gives powerful assurance. 1 John 5:14-15 reads, "This is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him."