Written by Claudya Elleossa, Indonesia, originally in Bahasa Indonesia
I’ve noticed something about the way we pray: We often ask the Lord to come and work in our lives.
Over and over again, I hear people asking for God’s intervention in their jobs, studies, family relationships, dating relationships, and so on.
I’m no exception. My pleas were often, “God, be involved in my life”—until I heard a message at church one Sunday.
That day, the preacher spoke about the importance of availing ourselves as God’s servants. That’s when it hit me. Though my usual prayers appeared humble and submissive, in reality, I was acting as if my life were a stage that belonged solely to me: I was the leading character, while God was merely the guest I invited in for a few acts. My prayers had placed God in the position of a helper, instead of the master of my life.
The Bible reminds us that we are created for God’s glory (Isaiah 43:7), all things serve God (Psalm 119:91), and that “we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works” (Ephesians 2:10).
God is the owner of our lives—He plays the main role. Whether we can “feel” Him or choose to involve Him, His presence in our lives is certain and never changing. Our spiritual insensitivity is what makes us feel like God is not present. The realization of this led me to change the way I pray.
Instead of asking for His presence, I ask Him to help me be more sensitive to His presence.
Instead of asking Him to arrange things the way I want them to be, I ask Him to enable me to live my life according to how He wills.
Instead of asking Him to be involved in my life, I ask Him to involve me in His works in this world.
Interestingly, after changing the way I prayed, I found my prayers answered quickly—especially the one where I asked to be involved in God’s mission. Someone I didn’t know beforehand approached me, and offered me an opportunity to write for a ministry. Without hesitation, I said yes. It was so exciting to witness God answering my changed prayers!
I am now involved in a youth ministry where I use my writing to serve God. It is amazing to see the wonderful outcome of my changed prayers.
“Take delight in the Lord,” says the psalmist, “and he will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4). Truly, the Lord will give you anything you ask for, as long as you make Him the center of your life and align your prayers with His words (John 15:7).