I have met a small group of people whose prayers create in me a hunger to know God better. They pray with intimacy, intensity, and confidence. They know Who they are talking to and they know who they are in relationship to Him.
Because we are each a unique creation we have a unique relationship with our Creator. We gain insight into these intimate relationships by listening to each other pray. At the same time, we are set free to offer our own authentic prayers that will, by design, be different in style and expression.
Having said that, I have been captivated recently by the prayers of a friend who usually starts her prayer with a strong “Thank you.” As she articulates the things she is thanking for, I recognize a confidence that God has indeed done each of the things that she mentions.
I wonder if I tend to offer these same prayers by starting them with the word, “Please.” I, by contrast, am asking God to do something. She is thanking Him because He did something.
How does God’s finished work on the cross inform our prayers?
Is it possible to pray from the wrong side of the cross? By this I mean, praying the way we would if we were still waiting for the Messiah? In so doing, are we asking Him to do things He has already done?
This Thanksgiving, I want to edit my own prayers and look for ways to acknowledge His finished work.
Thank you, Jesus for ______________________. If I thank Him before I see the answer I am praying in faith.
Holy Spirit, come and teach me to pray.
I so love your transparency / honesty. It is wonderful to me to see a “pastor” who shows the humility to state that her prayers often start with “please” – just as most of our prayers probably do. You easily could have written this article just re the awareness of the friend who starts out his/her prayers with thank you – but you chose to let us know that you often start out with “please”. You are so genuine and I think that is why so many of us seniors love you. Thank you for being you.