Daily Devotional – I’m Normal.™ I AM Ministries
“To promote Godly living in a culture committed to destroying it”
Saturday, May 24, 2014
In Jesus’ Name
I started my first Bible study while living in the Denver, Colorado area, my long-time home. Each week, after studying the assigned Bible passages and answering associated questions, we would get together as a group and share our answers and insights. Following this exchange, we listened to a lecture on the meaning of the passages we had studied.
My first teaching leader was a wonderful Christian man named Monk Hall. He was a self-admitted cowboy from the eastern plains of Colorado. He had grown up on a ranch and was intimately involved with the operations from a young age. He often used experiences from his youth and adult life to communicate Godly messages. This message is derived from his experience and wisdom.
Monk shared with us how by the time he was a young teen, he was often tasked with going into town on his own to obtain supplies for the ranch. He would visit the grocery store, the hardware store, the feed store, and other vendors in order to purchase the necessary items. At each of the merchants’ establishments, he was able to sign in his father’s name because everyone knew his father and understood the elder would make good on the debt.
Signature authority was a significant responsibility for a young teenager, something that could have been abused, yet both his father and the merchants trusted Monk with it. Monk admitted, however, that at times he had speculated as to how far he could push his authority. He thought he may have been able to go so far as to visit the local car dealer and to purchase a new pickup truck for the ranch by signing in his father’s name. After all, trucks wear out and are a vital necessity for the continued operation of a working ranch.
Monk knew his authority had its limits, however. Monk recognized he may have been able to buy a pickup truck, but he would not have been able to buy a new sports car by signing in his father’s name. This action would have been outside of his father’s will.
In John 14:13-14, Jesus tells us “And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.” Based on this counsel, we typically conclude our prayers by saying something to the effect of “And we ask this in Jesus’ name”. The question arises as to whether what we are asking for is really in the name of either Jesus or the Father. Are we really asking for something in His will rather than ours?
If we examine our prayers, we may find, on occasion, we are praying for sports cars rather than pickup trucks – we may be praying outside the will of our LORD. Perhaps we are asking that we be glorified rather than others, or glorified rather than giving the glory to God. Perhaps we are asking to win the lottery, a promotion at work, or a chance to get even with someone who has wronged us. Perhaps we are requesting benefits for ourselves that go against His needs or the needs of His Church. We are warned to refrain from praying outside’s God’s will: “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.” (James 4:3).
I feel confident that most of our prayers are heart-felt expressions and honest requests for God’s grace and the intercession for others. Today I ask you to examine what you are praying for. Try to be sure you are praying normally, that is, within His will, not your own. God will bless you if you repent from any sin. Repentance from inappropriateness in prayer will be rewarded as well. As you continue to develop and expand your prayer life, keep this concept in mind. Make sure you are praying in His name and His will. It is more normal to be praying for pickup trucks than sports cars. Make sure your motives are normal and pure so you are truly praying in Jesus’ name.
In His love and service,
A servant of Jesus Christ
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