How Great is Our God?
I have been praying a lot lately. I have been praying for things in my personal life to work this way or that. I have been praying for our kids, so that they find Christ and know His love. I pray for my parents and their continued health. I pray for friends who are sick, lonely, and lost. I pray for this world, that seems to be unraveling right before our eyes. I even pray for this election season, where many people feel they are forced to choose the “least worst” of two options.
My prayer routine spans a wide spectrum of issues, as does everyone’s I guess. Even with this great breadth of prayer, my conversations with God center mostly on my perspective of the world and what God has to offer us. With all this prayer, I still fall short. I still don’t feel like I talk to God enough for myself or my family or the world. I still find myself occasionally lost among the news and tragedy, helpless to do much of anything to make our world a better place. And, often, with all this prayer, I still feel like my prayer life is ineffective and not transformational, which leads me astray and leaves me alone.
A friend shared a devotional a few weeks ago that reminded me my prayer can’t just be a prayer that says “help me here” or “thanks for this”. Our prayer needs also to proclaim god’s greatness. This devotional used an Old Testament scripture to illustrate the point. In 2 Chronicles, chapter 20, Jehoshaphat is pleading with God about his challenging situation, but at the same time he exalts in the Lord’s attributes and greatness. “Power and might are in Your hand so that no one can stand against You.” (2 Chronicles 20:6). Even though he laments his placement, Jehoshaphat knows to call upon the splendor of God and this confidence leads to a revolutionary prayer.
The point is simple. When we give as much attention to declaring the greatness of the God we serve as we do our placing our needs and fears before Him, our prayers elevate from being self-centered to being God-centered. It is a lot like the power of positive thinking. Willing God’s power with confidence into our lives will, in fact, bring God’s presence to us. If there ever seemed a time to remind ourselves of God’s power and might, of His grace and compassion, of His healing, now is that time. Our world needs all of us to pray and to pray in a God-centered fashion on a huge scale. We know how great our God is, so why not tap that power and revolutionize our prayer in a way that transforms our world.