|Ye ask, and receive not, because ye ask amiss, that ye may consume it upon your lusts.||James 4:3|
‘I do pray,’ you may say. ‘But I don’t get what I ask for.’
That’s because you’re asking amiss. Prayer is not giving orders. It’s reporting for duty. And once a person finally understands that prayer is not man saying, ‘Bless the business; bring in the money; solve the problem’ and God saying, ‘Aye, aye, captain’, his prayer life will be revolutionized.
Prayer is saying, ‘Father, what do You want to do in my life? I want You to do what You see is best for me because I get mixed up so easily.’
I walked into his room during his nap to find one-year-old Peter John laying on his back, eagerly reaching for an object dangling just inches above his head. Living in a rustic cabin in the woods at that time, we were sometimes surprised by the visitors we would have. And this particular afternoon was no exception, for I was surprised indeed to see the object for which Peter was so intently reaching was a black widow spider.
We’re just like Peter John. We lay on our beds or kneel beside them and, through prayer, grab for things we think would be so wonderful, failing to realize they are nothing but black widows. Therefore, every bit as exciting to me as prayers God does answer are those He doesn’t answer because I know I’ll see that what I thought was so intriguing and tantalizing will prove to be poisonous and deadly. Oh, may we learn not to give orders or grab spiders but to do what Jesus did in the Garden: to submit to whatever the Father has for us.