From a Guest Blogger
Pray then in this way … Your will be done … Matthew 6:9,10
God’s sovereignty has sometimes felt to me like an impenetrable wall. If what God wants to happen will happen, come what may, then why pray? If the outcome of every situation is already determined then all my prayers and tears and pleading are meaningless and for nothing. If every bad thing that happens and every good thing that doesn’t happen is God’s will then what’s to be done? What is there to say?
In a sermon series on the Lord’s prayer, John MacArthur warns against the danger of passive resignation as a response to the sovereignty of God. This kind of fatalism is not something we see in the Bible. The disciples in the storm cried out to God; Jonah, taking the consequences of his own sin, called out to God in his distress; Hannah poured out her sorrow before the Lord; Jesus pleaded with His Father to take the cup of suffering away.
God’s sovereignty, rather than killing my motivation to pray, ought to be the greatest incentive to approach Him in prayer. If God was not sovereign my prayers would be futile because He would be unable to act. How could He change hearts, lives and circumstances or bring about events unless He ruled all things? How could He bring life from death, or give peace in the storm, or hope in despair? How could He possibly work all things together for my good and His glory?
But I’m invited (and commanded) to come to the One whose power is limitless, who controls all things and even directs the thoughts and intentions of His enemies, the sovereign Lord of lords who has ordained prayer as one of the means by which His will is accomplished.
1 Thessalonians 5:17 Pray without ceasing.
James 5:16b The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.
James 4:2b You do not have because you do not ask.