Need motivates prayer

Good morning everyone,
 
Our theme for this month: “Great thoughts from great Christians”
 
Our Bible verse for today: “Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6-7 (CSB)
 
Our thought for today: “Need motivates prayers, and prayer enhances our relationship with God”
 
The omniscience of God is a theological truth which means that God knows everything. There is nothing God doesn’t know. That revelation really doesn’t surprise us because after all, He is God. But the truth of the omniscience of God does beg the question, “If God already knows everything, what’s the purpose of prayer?” Good question. Why should we bother praying if God already knows in advance what we’re going to pray for, and He already knows the answer to our prayers before we even ask. Doesn’t that make prayer an exercise in futility? Isn’t prayer just a waste of our time, and of God’s?
 
George MacDonald, the Scottish pastor, theologian, and Bible scholar from the mid to late 1800s had some thoughts about the real reason God calls us to pray. He wrote, “What if He knows prayer to be the thing we need first and most? What if the main object in God’s idea of prayer is the supplying of our great, our endless need – the need of Himself? Hunger may drive the runaway child home, and he may or may not be fed at once, but he needs his mother more than his dinner. Communion with God is the one need of the soul beyond all other need: prayer is the beginning of that communion, and some need is the motive of that prayer …”
 
This is insightful and helpful. It provides us with one answer to why we pray. Our unmet needs – whether they concern finances, family, illness, or anything else – those needs drive us to our knees in prayer because we know that God can address those needs for us. That then brings us into communion with God which, it turns out, is what our soul needs more than the answer to the prayer itself. Our soul needs communion with God more than our body needs food or health or finances. The unmet physical needs become the things that lead us into communion with God, which is what we really need more than anything else.
 
This is what Paul was teaching in Philippians 4:6-7 (above). Don’t fret and worry, don’t be unduly anxious about the rent money, the aching back, the rebellious child, or anything else. Bring all of those things and more to God in prayer, and then allow Him to minister to your soul. The prayer time will bring us peace. It might also result in an answer that helps to address the original need, but whether it does or not, it will have accomplished the greater and more important purpose of nourishing our soul through communion with our Lord.
 
The fact is that needs motivate prayers, and prayers enhance our relationship with God.
 
God Bless,
Pastor Jim
 
Copyright © 2021 Oak Hill Baptist Church, All rights reserved.

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