Now, he didn't pit faith against submission, and I'm not really going to do that either. But rather, I'm going to challenge our perception of faith in prayer, against real true submission in prayer.
I hear so much about having enough faith when praying, but no one ever talks about being submissive in that prayer - at least not very often.
You know we should be praying in submission to what God wants?
We need to pause while praying - listen to what God wants us to pray, and then pray for that. Sometimes God wants hard things for us, because He wants His glory to shine through us, to show others that He helps us through things that are difficult.
There are some who say if we have enough faith in praying, then God will do it for us - whatever that 'it' is. "He will heal us if we just go in to the throne room of God and claim the blood and speak it in Jesus' name."
With all Christian love in my heart - do you hear how that sounds?
Are we in charge of what God does? Do we have the right to say to God, "I am speaking, and you should obey"?
Is God a lesser spirit that we can order around? Is He like a Genie in a lamp, making us His master just because we've got possession of the lamp?
Just by saying, 'In Jesus' name' do we somehow force God to do what we want?
You may cite the verse that says we should come boldly to the throne of grace, and I agree. But let's look at that verse clearly.
Last night my pastor gave us the illustration of his little daughter having complete access to his inner, private office. She can come in there anytime. She has ACCESS to her daddy at any time she needs him.
But she doesn't call the shots inside that office.
She can't walk in boldly and say, "Ok Dad, I'm here, I want this and this and this, and you need to do it now because you're my dad and you said."
She can't do that. She isn't in charge of her dad. She has ACCESS, but not Authority over her father.
It's like that with us.
We have ACCESS to God, and His power. But we don't have authority over that power. God doesn't give us the right to boss Him around.
Instead of assuming we've got the right to tell God what He's going to do, ask instead what God wants. Ask God for strength and His power and grace to get through whatever He wants you to go through. Ask Him for healing, yes, but also ask Him to give you the grace to get through it if He chooses not to heal outright.
Bow in submission to God - ask Him what He wants for you - and then you'll have boldness to ask for the big things..not because they're what you want, but because you know it's what God wants you to ask.