It would almost seem contradictory to talk of patient persistence, but this is exactly what prayer is. One of the most amazing aspects of Chrysalis is the amount of prayer that goes into the preparation of these weekends and the amount of prayer that happens during the weekend. I almost say this to my shame, but prayer is not as powerful a reality in my life as it should be. I don’t know why I don’t pray more often, more consistently, more intentionally. I think that part of it is that I don’t know if what I am saying is me wanting my will to be done or God’s. This is the struggle that I face.
Over the last couple of months I have discovered several scriptures that have helped me to focus in on what praying in God’s will actually is. I know that I have tended to pray hoping that what I was praying for was what God wanted me to be praying for. What I have discovered is that God’s will more readily available than we think. God has put His will within the Scriptures so that we can have a place to begin with. The age old question of what God’s will is for each of our lives has become such a distraction to what God has actually said that we fail to live out what God has already said, and we fail to live into the fullness that God has purposed for His children. Let’s just look at a few of these scriptures.
3For this is the will of God, your sanctification… 1 Thessalonians 4:3 (ESV)
Paul writes to the Thessalonians and tells them that one of God’s purposes for them is that they grow in sanctification, or holiness. What this means is that God is interested in the transformation of the heart and our lifestyles. Sanctification begins on the inside, but inevitable manifests itself in daily living. This is unavoidable. Therefore a sign of our compliance with and submission to God’s will should be seen in our increased sanctification. Are you different? Have you changed in the time that you have come to know Jesus?
15For this is the will of God, that by doing good you should put to silence the ignorance of foolish people. 1 Peter 2:15 (ESV)
Peter provides for us the reason that our sanctification is so important to God. God desires that our lives serve as proof that there are no other gods except Him. Only the true God could change a life so that it reflects the love, grace and power of God. God desires that all men come the realization that there is no other being in the created universe worthy of worship. But the only way to do this is through the effect of the love of God as it is experienced and passed on through the believer.
For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the last day.” John 6:40 (ESV)
Jesus leaves no doubt in the mind of those that were listening to him when he says this. God’s will is that whoever looks, i.e., believes in, Jesus will have eternal life. Not only that, but Jesus makes a promise to those that do believe in him. Jesus promises to also raise them from the dead in the last day.
And the world is passing away along with its desires, but whoever does the will of God abides forever. 1 John 2:17 (ESV)
The will of the Father is waiting to be done! The world is wasting away because it has failed to see and do what it is that God desires. But for those that find it, there is the promise of abiding forever with Jesus. This verse does raise the question: What is will of God? If we are supposed to be doing this will how to we find it so that we can do it?
In the second part of this post we will look a little closer at who are the ones that we should connect with. It is important that we associate and fellowship with those that are in agreement with the Word of God. If our desire is to pray in God’s will we must remain connected to others that have the same desire.
The Power of Patient Persistence (Pt. 1)
The Power of Patient Persistence (Pt. 2)