Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. – Matthew 6:9-13 (NIV)
It is so easy for me to say the words, "your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven", but to truly desire it in my heart is very difficult. It has become easier over time as I have experienced the will of God be perfect in its unfolding and timing. But in my heart I am a someone that enjoys being in control and enforcing my will.
When I pray these words though, I find myself uniquely connected to Christ. Connected through a common desire to do our own will but a realization that the Father's will is best. Praying these words each day, Christ submitted to the will of his father in heaven and made God's will his mission while on earth.
For I have come down from heaven to do the will of God who sent me, not to do my own will. And this is the will of God, that I should not lose even one of all those he has given me, but that I should raise them up at the last day. - John 6:38-39 (NLT)
And because of this, Jesus is the perfect example for all of us as we contemplate these final words in the opening to the Lord's prayer.
My heart's prayer becomes, "Let your will be done Father. No matter what I believe I need, no matter what I want, no matter what the world tells me to expect and demand. Let your will be done."
These words are only made possible for me when I remember that God created me and is the designer of the universe - when I remember that through my life God is honored - when I remember that in order for me to fully experience what it means to be a child of God, that I must let his kingdom reign in my heart and be made evident through my life - only then do I have the courage to ask for God's will to be done.
Without this understanding, there is confusion and chaos. There is me trying to reconcile and understand death, disease, broken relationships, war, and violence in the world.
Without this understanding there is exhaustion and burnout from me as I try to control it all and keep it all together at work and at home.
Without this understanding there is no hope that God can take the destructive consequences of humans abusing their free will and turn it into something redemptive and good.
I must live in the will of God, humbly submitting to him, because his will is perfect in its unfolding and timing. When I do this I am able to live with purpose and make God's will my mission, just as Christ did.
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. Amen.
- Do you struggle with submitting to the will of God, if so why?
- What do you do daily to learn and apply the will of God to your life?
- How have you seen God take a negative experience and use it for something positive?
Make it a great day!