Let’s be honest. For most of us (and I’m including myself here) our faith and our prayers are oftentimes (if not always) focused on eradicating the problems we and others are facing while making our lives better and easier … smooth sailing so to speak.
Please speak up and comment if you disagree or you would say it a different way.
While I am absolutely nowhere near this objective, I would like to have a faith and offer prayers ‘according to His purpose’. Check it out …
‘He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed IN Him with a view to an administration suitable to the fullness of the times, that is, the summing up of all things IN Christ, things in the heavens and things on the earth.’ Ephesians 1:9-10 (NASB)
The summing up of all things IN Christ, things in the heavens and things on earth … God’s will and God’s purpose. ALL things … and that includes faith and prayers … work toward that end … work towards eternity.
Doing a phrase search on “according to His purpose” reveals two interesting points …
‘And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.’ Romans 8:28 (NASB)
An extremely key point here: Those who love God are called according to His purpose … NOT their own. His purpose … the summing up of all things IN Christ. All things working together for good is to that purpose … NOT a problem-free life.
We are called to follow Christ and He did indeed show the way of this pathway.
Then He (Jesus) said to them, “My soul is deeply grieved, to the point of death; remain here and keep watch with Me.” And He went a little beyond them, and fell on His face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it is possible, let this cup pass from Me; yet not as I will, but as You will” … He went away again a second time and prayed, saying, “My Father, if this cannot pass away unless I drink it, Your will be done.” Matthew 26:38-39,42 (NASB)
Just like us, Jesus was faced with a battle of His will vs. the will of the Father. We know the rest of this story … over the next day there was no problem-free journey for Jesus. But because of what He did out of love and in obedience to the Father, we have hope today.
Oh Lord, perfect in me a faith and a prayer life according to your purpose … not my own!