Prayer, ultimately is submitting oneself to the will of God..
When you pray for understanding you are saying,
"Lord, I submit myself to your wisdom. I do not and cannot know these things without your help. I acknowledge your sovereignty and submit myself wholly to your guidance."
When you ask the Lord for healing-for yourself or for someone else-you are not begging and certainly not ordering a healing from God. You are acknowledging by word and deed, I could go so far as to say, by faith, accepting and admitting your need. Placing yourself and others into the active working will of God.
"Lord, I acknowledge the need for your activity in this situation. I cannot bring this healing. If it comes- when it comes- for ultimately all death and disease will end in complete wholeness in your name...You alone will be praised as the author and administer of peace. I fully submit my body, wants, and wills to your care knowing that you alone secure my fate."
If you believe that God is in control and willing for you to have goodness with Him and in Him, then you cannot pray in a position of begging or ordering.
You need not beg, for His desire is always for you and your best.
You need not order as it goes without saying that you do not order God. And, believing in His sovereignty you need not feel the burden of ordering either angels n your behalf or enemy forces on His. He can take care of these details. He will. He does.
Your prayer humbles all lofty designs and ideals dwelling in your own realm and places them firmly and decidedly into His.
All this- all of it- can be taken to a different level entirely when we talk about thankfulness. A prayer of thanks-and that given in faith- is truly the all encompassing boundary of prayer. To center yourself in a prayer-circle of praise born of thanks is to say,
"Lord thank you for your completion. Thank you for encircling me in your wholeness. Thank you for your peace that passes all my understanding. I fully accept it now. Thank you."
You may be given the gift of warfare. You may be given the gift of boundless faith. You may believe that God puts on you and in you the ability to relentlessly accost the enemy and pound it into submission. You believe that God supplies the might through your words or faith or prayers. You may believe that you have within you the bottomless pools of divine reliance. You look to God believing that He wields His power according to His good measure and your place is to walk in His strength, rising up in His name. Sometimes these two ways of thought are completely interchangeable.
Even typing them out I see that, depending on your mood, you might just find this paragraph absurdely redundant.
If you are nodding in the affirmative then you might need to go read parts one and two of this prayer sequence. (ugh...the thought that I even have a three part is annoying)
Ok so if you read those then you might see that I have a problem with prayer as warfare.
I want to say it is unnecessary. But I cannot say that. yet.
I just don't get it. I don't feel like it is for me. It makes me feel very stressed out. I think it pumps some people up. I also get stressed out by the thought of singing songs to people to bless them. There are people out there that are totally called to just such a position in the name of God. Praise Him in all His goodness that I am not one of those. Sheesh I get chills (as in heebyjeebies not goosebumps) just thinking of such things.
So when I did warfare I felt like David in Saul's armor. The size of the weapons made me completely inadequate for the task at hand. I need less stuff. Less words. (quit laughing)
I see that there are some out there that fit the armor quite nicely.
I just want to say it again and again and again...freedom. I want to bless you to do what you need to do in the name of Jesus. And I want, want, want, to feel the freedom to do the same.
So I promise to try and quit thinking about how unnecessary your war prayers are. And you quit thinking that I am lazy for not engaging the enemy and kickin butt. k?
Back to those thankfulness prayers.
Did you ever see Mad magazine back in the day? They always had this picture on the back that was pointed in its own way but if you folded it in half in a certain way where the arrows matched up you would see this entirely new picture.
Yeah. I think prayers of thanks are like that.
You, as a thankful believer, get to reach across time and space and pull God's reality into touch with your perception. Another way to look at it...you get to step across all the begging and the whining and the ordering and pounding and all the other stuff right into the very gates of God.
Remember the scripture...I will enter His gates with thanksgiving in my heart....
What if that is like the keys to the kingdom??!
"Thank you God" = step right on in.
New picture entirely.
Our readiness to accept His will and thank Him for everything gives us a pretty cushy dwelling place within the city gates of the Almighty.
Thank you Jesus. All done.