by Richard Long,
“LET thy merciful ears, O Lord, be open to the prayers of thy humble servants; and that they may obtain their petitions make them to ask such things as shall please thee; through Jesus Christ our Lord.†Amen.”
The above prayer was the “Collect” that was used in our church this morning, and all over the nation. (Similar versions were used around the world.)
I like this short prayer because it encapsulates a powerful principle that we have been seeking to learn at the National House of Prayer. Prayers are more effective when you ask for the things that God already wants to do. Sounds pretty basic doesn’t it.
Of course the real challenge is to know the mind of the Lord. Certainly the safest and clearest way to know God’s will is by reading and studying his written Word. He has so fully revealed Himself in the pages of Scripture.
What about timing issues, or circumstantial situations in which we are not sure what is the mind and heart of God? Well this is where taking time to listen and wait and allow the Lord to specifically show us comes in. The counsel of wise friends is always invaluable in confirming a more subjective feeling; that’s why we are meant to walk in community.
Truly we have found that when we take the time to ask, and sincerely are willing to hear the answer whatever it is, that the Father is faithul in showing us how to pray “such things as please Him”.