God’s Will • Devotion #5: Eloquence?
Jill Osmon | Assistant to Lead Pastor
“Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” Matthew 6:10
The Lord’s Prayer is a template for how we should pray. If you look at verses 5-9a, you will see that the Gentiles were praying incorrectly, they were praying to be heard by men, not by God. “And when you pray, you must not be like the hypocrites. For they love to stand and pray in the synagogues and at the street corners, that they may be seen by others. Truly, I say to you, they have received their reward. But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you. And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think that they will be heard for their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.”
I do not know about you, but I like to sound eloquent when I pray, and that can make it more about the words then the actual meaning of what I am saying. It can sound really good and still be empty, meaningless prayers. Which, I think, if we all admit, we want our prayers to have depth, meaning, and be powerful before God. So how we pray is important and what we pray is important.
Verse 10 has always been so interesting to me. In one commentary, it talks about how we ask about His will to be done. Are we resigned to His will, knowing it will happen? Are we annoyed that we do not get our way? Our attitude when asking for His will to be done is important. It shows where we are in our faith. When we ask for God’s will to be done, it should be because we have come to the point in our love and trust that we know God has the best for us, whether it is what we think is best or not. It is difficult; no one can say that giving up control, giving up earthly desires, is simple or easy. But what I do know is that when we begin to give control over to God, let go of what we think we should get, let go of what the world says we should have, and look around to what God has given to us, we will find our faith stronger, and our life being used by God. That starts with a prayer asking for His will to be done.
We know that what He has planned will happen, but He still commands us to pray. John MacArthur says, “To pray Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven is to rebel against the worldly idea that sin is normal and inevitable…” We pray because we want our life to reflect God here on earth, not to reflect what our flesh wants. As we continue to learn about prayer, do not forget that we pray for many reasons and one of those reasons is to connect with God. In connecting with Him, our desire for His will grows, and our request for His will to be done is an outpouring of our faith in Him. So we need to be clear in our prayer, it does not have to be eloquent or perfect, but it does have to be about God and not men.