You Are the Means to God's Ends

Dear Prayer Team,

How necessary are our prayers? We might think to ourselves, “God is God. He can run the world just as well with or without me praying to Him.” Brothers and sisters, the Lord would have us all know that our prayers are absolutely necessary to His purposes on the earth (not to mention that they are precious to Him!). 

Jesus taught us both that God is a good Father and that our prayers bring about the Father’s good gifts. 

Matthew 7:11 says, “how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!” (emphasis added). The Father wants to be asked. He wants us to develop a close relationship in which we trust Him and go to Him for help. He is not interested in giving gifts to disinterested individuals. He longs to cultivate a Father/child relationship with each of us just as Jesus has with the Father. Thus, God has designed that our prayers are a primary means to drawing forth His good ends in our lives. 

Our prayers are also a chief means for others to experience God’s goodness. 

Paul knew that the prayers of the saints greatly affected his life. In Philippians 1:19 he wrote, “I know that through your prayers and the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ this will turn out for my deliverance.” It amazes me that Paul would put our prayers on equal footing with “the help of the Spirit of Jesus Christ,” but Paul knew the absolute significance of our prayers in the sovereign plans of Almighty God. 

If we are to prevail in prayer, we must understand our role in God's works. God makes plans from beginning to end, including the means to accomplish the outcome. The vital importance of our prayers does not therefore imply that God is weak or dependent. Nor does the absolute sovereign power of God render our prayers needless or merely a “good spiritual discipline.” We have to grasp this theology of prayer. This theological knowledge is not for theory but for practice, so that we might love prayer and devote ourselves to it without losing heart (Luke 18:1). 

Augustine stated this principle succinctly: “Without God, we cannot; without us, God will not.” 

Our Father, we come to You in love, thanks, and wonder. You are enthroned on high; there is none like You. We also come to fulfill our purposes to be the means to Your ends. You have chosen us and appointed us to stand before You and ask for Your purposes to be done on the earth as in Heaven. We also know that only the name of Jesus enables us to come to You and makes our prayer powerful before You. Now, unleash Your Spirit’s power in our nation. Make us bold, fruitful witnesses. Make us people of great faith and prayer. Bring about an awakening of our collective consciousness to our need for the Savior and our highest joy in You. Give us the will to live set apart lives that show people Your greatness. In the name of Jesus we pray, amen!

Your servant in Christ,

Chuck Hetzler, Ph.D.
Director, Christian Union Day and Night

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