Monday, April 2, 2012

Praying the Promises

While reading the Old Testament, I am struck by how both Moses and David pray bodly to God, holding him to his promises. Moses spoke with God "as with a friend." Even in face to face conversations he spoke openly and honestly to God. In fact, he quoted God's words back at God.

You say you are pleased with me, God. Prove it.
You say these are your people God. Spare them.
You said you would be with us. Stay.
You promised we would defeat our enemies. Do it.
You said we would be known as your people. Then don't abandon us.

David held God to his word, too. He prayed with assuredness that God would bless him, and bless his family and his future decendants. He thanked God for being a God who keeps his promises and prayed with certainty that if God said it, it would in fact happen.
These two men of the faith hold God to his promises by praying those promises back to God. Like an audio recording, they hit rewind and play back God's words to God.
"You hear that God? You you said this, so therefore I am going to hold you to it!"

Why can they pray with such assurance?

Because they know the God they pray to keeps his promises. If he says it; if he promises it; they can hold him to it. He will follow through. His faithfulness endures forever. He cannot lie. He keeps his word.
So I thought - what a powerful way to pray! I can pray bodly to God and ask him to keep his promises to me.

Lord, you promise to never leave. Stay!
You say you care for me. Show me!
You say that I can never be removed from your love. Help me to know and believe that!
You say that you will forgive me. Please do!
You offer a peace that passes understanding. Give it to me!
You say that if I have faith like a mustard seed it will be enough to move a mountain! Lord, strengthen my faith so that is has mountainous strength!

While I pray bodly, my heart is both humble and thankful. Humble, because it is only because of Christ that I can even approach God and ask for anything. Without Jesus, I would not be able to ask, nor would I dare to ask because all I would get, no matter what I asked, would be justice. And what is justice? Getting what you deserve. And what I deserve would not be what I am given through Jesus. Thankfully, because of Jesus, I can ask God to keep his promises to me. I ask with the humility of knowing I ask through Christ.

I also ask thankfully. I thank God for the promises he has already delivered on and for the ones he will certainly answer in the future. My requests spring from a heart full of the joy because I know that I am God's child, and as a child, I approach my Heavenly Father and say, "Father, you promised." Just a Jesus cried out on the cross to his Father, I can cry out to mine.

One more thing. The prayers of Moses and David also reminded me of how important it is to know what God has promised. How can I hold him to his word if I don't know his Word? How can I quote God's promises back to him even I don't even know what they are?

May my prayers be filled with the promises of God.

May my heart filled with moutainous faith in His truthfulness and faithfulness.

May my soul filled with the hope that comes with believing he will do what he says he will do.


I Thessalonians 5:24

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