Amazingly God doesn’t need to hear from us—He wants to. Privileged to pour out our hearts, we receive His comfort in exchange. Prayer intimately and powerfully connects us to God in every place.
“Devoted to Prayer: In Desperate Places”
“In the days of His flesh, He offered up both prayers and supplications with loud crying and tears to the One able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His piety.” Hebrews 5:7, NASB
“Please, Mommy—please!” Anyone with children has heard that before, and the response often requires tremendous wisdom. Sometimes I hold the line, and other times I’m a softie mom. I find it especially hard to resist tears, which still occasionally well up in my daughter’s eyes. Either I relent or firmly maintain what’s already been determined. When I do say no, it’s usually because I believe that answer will benefit my child more in the long run.
Jesus earnestly prayed daily throughout His earthly life. Sometimes His prayers were more urgent, thus offered with wrenching cries and tears. Because of His piety (godly fear), His Father heeded His petitions. Jesus knew who held the power to grant His desires, so He withheld nothing in His honest, heartfelt requests. He always asked.
God hears our requests too. He sees the tears. He listens to our anguish. But that doesn’t mean He always gives what we want. Why?
God says no because His plans are better than our desires.
Agonizingly Jesus pleaded with His Father before He went to the cross: “Father, if Thou art willing, remove this cup from Me; yet not My will, but Thine be done” (Luke 22:42). As He prayed, He didn’t sweat normal tears—His consisted of blood. Yet His Father still said no … so hard to imagine. The perfect Man, the sinless Son labored in prayer to the “One able to save Him from death.” And He said no. Why?
Because our Father’s plan superseded saving His Son—it involved saving us.
God’s plan existed before time began. Lovingly He determined to buy us back through His beloved Son’s blood. Generously He gave His only Son. Selfishly sinners rejected and killed Christ. But God won! Today Jesus sits at God’s right hand—offering up prayers and supplications—for us (see Rom. 8:34).
Maybe you’ve been crying to the Lord for something or someone in particular. Like Jesus, keep asking. Like Jesus, stay surrendered to God’s will. Then like Jesus, God’s perfect plan will be enacted through your life.
If God says no, we can rest in knowing His plan surpasses that desire.
Gracious Father, please empower me to always ask … and always accept Your answer. In Jesus’ holy name, Amen.
Image courtesy of Mick Amato www.flickr.com/photos/mickamato/8050708619/