11) Communicating Peitions
||2013-09-21 19:39:29, 조회 : 2,037, 추천 : 434
| Michelle Yim|
When I was reading this chapter, I caught myself thinking “Wow, it’s almost as if, Pratt wrote this specifically for me”. The reason being is, often times I have trouble asking God for the things that I want. On one hand I don’t want to sound like that spoiled brat that’s never satisfied and the other hand there are so many things that I want, so it’s hard to suppress it. Pratt gives us a informational chapter specifically on how we can communicate our petitions effectively to God.
When we examine the Lord’s prayer, we can see that it contains five requests within five verses (Matt 6:9-13). Even when we read Solomon’s prayer in 1Kings 8:22-53, we can also see the many requests that he asked. There isn’t anything wrong with making multiple requests to God. However, if “petitions” is constantly the major part of your prayer then it starts to neglect the other dimensions of effectively communicating with God. Jesus teaches us that we must be urgent and persistent in our prayers. Jesus gives us an example of persistency through a parable.
“Then he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and he goes to him at midnight and says, ‘Friends, lend me three loaves of bread, because a friend of mine on a journey has come to me and I have nothing to set before him’. Then the one inside answers, “Don’t bother me. The door is already locked and my children are with me in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything”. I tell you, though he will not get up and give him the bread because he is his friend, yet because of the man’s persistence he will get up and give him as much as he needs” (Luke 11:5-8)
This is a great example of how God is concerned for the needs of His children. However, the parable also shows us that it is our responsibility to be urgent and persistent. We can see many examples in Psalms, where Psalmist faces many difficulties and they convey it through their prayers. We can examine one in Psalms 69 where he says,
“I am forced to restore what I did not steal. But I pray to you O Lord, in time of your favor; in your great love, O God, answer me with your sure salvation. Rescue me from the mire, do not let me sink; deliver me from those who hate me, from the deep waters”.
This psalmist shows us that he didn’t simply just say “God, take care of my issues”. He went into a elaborate detail and we can tell that its urgent without him saying “I need this done by a certain time God”. It’s a vast difference from the way that the psalmist pray and the way we pray. Jesus taught us not only to be urgent, but to also do it in a certain manner. Often times when we need something urgently done from anyone, we are persuasive and try to get the other person to see your way. There are a lot of situations that happen in our lives, such as family issues, hunger, sickness..etc. However we express them in prayer without the persuasion and importance that it becomes rather meaningless.
Building a Case
When we try to plead with someone to meet our requests, we don’t come to them saying “Hey I need you to do this and this”. Naturally, we devise a plan and think of ways to present it and even sometimes have a back up plan. The person I know best that does it would be my little brother Abraham. When we were younger and when one of us would do something wrong, our dad would get mad at us. Before my dad would even get the chance to scold us, my brother would always say “wait, wait wait the reason why we did this and that is because…”. So we used to joke around a lot and say that one day he’ll be a lawyer because of his excellent pleading skills. We can also see this in the story of Abraham and Sodom & Gomorrah. When he learned that God was going to destroy the cities he didn’t just ask God “God please don’t destroy it”. He built a persuasive case to present to God and said,
“Will you sweep it away and not spare the place for the sake of the fifty righteous people in it? Far be it from you to do such a thing—to kill the righteous with the wicked, treating the righteous and the wicked alike. Far be it from you! Will not the Judge of all the earth do right?” (Gen 18:24-25)
He reminded God that he was the Judge of all the earth and that he won’t destroy the wicked and righteous. He also did so with humility and determination.
Kinds of Support
Pratt raises three questions that he wants us to think about, “What specific kinds of support can we legitimately offer to God? From what persuasive resources may we draw? How may we order these thoughts in ways that please God?” There are three categories that we can divide them in. First, we must support some requests by reflecting on God’s people. Secondly, we must base our requests while considering the world around us. Thirdly, we must sustain these petitions with the Word of God. Basically, in layman’s terms: God’s people, the world, and God and His Words.
When we see the story of the golden calf , God wanted to destroy the people of Israel. However, Moses urgently offered a prayer and said,
“O Lord, he said why should your anger burn against your people, whom you brought out of Egypt with great power and a mighty hand?” (Exodus 32:11)
Moses made a point to say “your people”. He knew that the Israelites weren’t seen as just regular people to God. Because of this reason, Moses built the case by focusing on the Israelites and God’s special connection. A Psalmist in Psalms 55 mentions events in the world as support for his petitions.
“Confuse the wicked, O Lord, confound their speech…For I see violence and strife in the city. Day and night they prowl about on its walls; malice and abuse are within it” (Psalms 55:9-10).
Lastly, we can see from Psalms 74, that the Psalmist requests a petition but with the support of Gods words (and according to his covenant faithfulness and mercy). He says,
“Do not hand over the life of your dove to wild beasts; do not forget the lives of your afflicted people forever. Have regard for your covenant”
Again in Psalms 119:149, another Psalmist says,
“O Lord, where is your former great love, which in your faithfulness you swore to David?” (Psalms 89:49)
In this chapter we learned how to offer urgent and persuasive petitions to God. This chapter in particular helped me a lot in my effectiveness in prayer. We often times feel that God isn’t answering our wants and needs, however it may be because we’ve been praying wrong all along. I hope for you to implement this in your prayer and enjoy the many fruits that God blesses you with!
* admin님에 의해서 게시물 이동되었습니다 (2015-12-31 05:58)
||대화는 얼마나 중요한지 모릅니다. 지난 번에 오랫동안 같이 살았던 머리가 흰 노부부를 만난 적이 있습니다. 비결이 무엇이냐고 했더니 대화라고 합니다. 어떤 대화를 하느냐고 했더니, 일상적인 대화를 한다고 합니다. 시들한 것이기에, 중요하지 않는 일이기에 말을 하지 않으면 그때부터 문제가 생기고, 차이가 생긴다고 합니다.
둘째 아들 아브라함은 하는 짓마다 얄밉고, 혼내주어야 할 때가 많이 있습니다. 지난 번에 수요예배를 가기 전에 무엇인가를 급하게 쓰고 있었습니다. 무엇을 쓰느냐고 했더니, 이렇게 대답을 합니다. " stupid prayer?"라고 합니다. 혼내주려고 하였더니, 그때부터 말도 되지 않는 이유를 엄청나게 쏟아냅니다. 듣고 있는 중에 마음이 풀리고, 다음부터 조심하라는 경고밖에는 할 수 없는 상황을 만들었습니다.
무엇을 사가지고 와서 주는 자녀도 좋지만, 이런 저런 이야기를 하기 위해서 제가 있는 지하실로 내려오는 자녀가 얼마나 저를 행복하게 하는 지 모릅니다.
거기다가 설득력이 있고, 급한 일이고, 아버지가 한 말을 가지고 요청을 한다면 이루어지지 않을 일이 없을 것같습니다.
요 15:7절은 바로 이런 관점이 아닐까 생각이 듭니다.
" 너희가 내 안에 거하고( 가족) 내 말이 너희 안에 거하면 ( 하나님의 말씀) 무엇이든지 원하는 대로 구하라 그리하면 이루리라."
원하는 것이 많아야, 기도가 길어지고 간절해집니다. 무엇이든 이라는 말은 정확한 말이 아닌가 생각이 듭니다. 무엇이든 구한다는 것은 우리의 기도 시간이 충분해야 함도 상기합니다.