Recently, I started reading The Circle Maker, by Mark Batterson. We are also going through the video-driven study with a small group of our high school students. I have only read the first four chapters so far, but it has already challenged me in many ways. The first of which involves being more bold in my prayers.
I will admit that many of my prayers are often filled with a “Your will be done” attitude. Honestly, from Jesus’ example, I do not think that is wrong at all. However, when I started thinking about it, even Jesus told God what He wanted before He said those famous words. I have also been reminded of other times when the Bible says, “The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective” (James 5:16 NIV). I look to David’s prayers and that of other prophets in the Old Testament as well. Over and over, I get the sense that Batterson knows what he is talking about. Our prayers need to be bolder.
This does not mean we need to run ahead of God, per say, but it does mean that we need to begin spelling out our request to God. When asked by the God of the universe what we want Him to do for us, we need to be open, honest, and bold. Not because of ourselves, but because of the power that God has to honor those requests. Batterson goes on to say that not all those requests will be granted, because God is not a genie in a bottle, which is very important to remember. However, He does want us to honor Him with the bold request, because that shows Him that we really do trust Him.
While I do not know exactly how my prayer life will change, I do know that I am going to try to be bolder. I will begin to spell out what I would like God to do in some situations – not based on my own understanding, but based on what I think He would want to happen. Then, as always, I do believe it is important to submit to God’s will in the end, just as Jesus did in the garden. I will try to be bold, but when it is all said and done, God is still God, and I am not.