Have you ever wondered why God answers prayers?
Do you believe it is because you prayed just right? That you managed to stumble upon the perfect word combination to persuade God. Or rather that you managed to ask the right number of times and wore God down. Or is it because you reminded him of your need, that otherwise he would have forgotten about it.
“And when you pray, do not be like the hypocrites, for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and on the street corners to be seen by others. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward in full. But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.
There is a substantial difference between need and want. We understand this well when we consider it with regards to other people or especially when we consider our kids. If a child says they want something we think about their use of the word ‘need’ -the phrase ‘do you really need it or just want it?’. Prayer is a way of acknowledging that God is your heavenly father – acknowledging that you trust him.
Often we can approach God with the equivalent of a shopping list of our needs. This isn’t wrong – there’s scripture to support asking God for your needs. However, could there be a more beneficial approach to prayer?
This is where prayer comes alive! When we ask God to give you all that he has for us – nothing more and nothing less.