Do we, as Christians, set our sights too low when asking for God’s blessings? I want to suggest that we do.
Sometime I pray that God will give me an opportunity to share the gospel with one person. It seems like a commendable aim, and it probably is, but wouldn’t it be better to ask for chances to share the gospel with more people? Maybe we pray God will protect us from a specific sin which is troubling us, but why do we not ask for perfection? Do we aim to be more patient, but forget to ask for gentleness and other virtues?
Am I being too harsh? Don’t we have to be realistic? I don’t think we do.
Okay, we do need to be realistic, but not if it means limiting God’s power. There’s no point asking God for something ludicrous we know He won’t give us, but if we want something for His glory why not ask for it? We may think that sharing the gospel with every person we talk to one day is unrealistic – I know I don’t have the faith to pray such a prayer – but does that mean I shouldn’t?
One of my favourite verses of the Bible is Psalm 81:10 which is above my bed at home. It tells me three things .
- “I am the Lord your God“. The Lord, who is all-powerful, wise and good, is my God. He has chosen me as one of His children, and He loves to do good for me.
- “Who brought you out of the land of Egypt“. The Israelites were brought out of slavery to their Egyptian masters by a series of miraculous events by God which culminated in the destruction of the entire Egyptian army. Similarly, I have been brought out of slavery to sin by a series of miracles culminating in my heart being transformed and the destruction of sin’s power over me.
- “Open your mouth wide, and I will fill it“. God wants us to ask for big things. There is no command in the Bible that I know of instructing us to part our lips slightly to receive blessing. We are to open our mouths wide. We are to be expectant of something big! God will put as much in our mouths as possible, and the wider we open the more He will provide.
Of course this doesn’t give us licence to ask for the ridiculous, but if we are praying for something we know is glorifying to God then we should be thinking big not small. My personal evangelism is atrocious, and it’s rare I have the guts to share Jesus’ amazing love with my friends. I know I’m a massive failure in the evangelism department, but I also know my failures are forgotten by God and that His power is sufficient to embolden me to reverse them. So why should I pray for a single chance to talk about the precious faith I have been given by God? Why not five chances? Why not ten? Why not every person I talk to? The Bible is littered with commands to ask God for great things, so that is exactly what we should do.