Sometimes, God answers my prayers with a resounding “yes.” Not all the time, but sometimes.
There is, however, one prayer that always seems to be answered.
Every now and then, when I feel particularly fond of God, I pray this prayer: God, help me to always do your will. Help me to always be close to you. Even if it hurts and breaks my heart.
I don’t know why I started praying this prayer. It might have been because I realized without God, I am nothing. I value God’s will for my life above all.
It might not sound like a crazy prayer, but let me tell you IT IS.
Why? Because I don’t always value God’s will for my life. Most of the time, I value MY will for my life. I want what I want and sometimes God is just a means to an end. I want my dreams and to follow my heart (whatever that means).
A lot of the time, I don’t trust God.
Of course, I don’t think about this. I usually think I’m doing just fine not constantly seeking God. Throw in a few verses during the day, do my Christianly duties, be a nice person, etc. Besides, God wasn’t serious when He said to “pray without ceasing,” right?
God’s ultimate will for my life and for yours is not that we will do wonderful, marvelous deeds in the world. It isn’t that we’ll be famous or rich. It isn’t that we’ll become pastors or evangelists. Though all these things are good things, it isn’t God’s number one priority. His priority is to glorify Himself. He doesn’t just want our dreams or good deeds, He wants ALL OF US. And that’s what true sacrifice is. Sacrificing every part of ourselves and saying, “Okay God. Do what you want.” That hurts.
Currently, I’m going through a lot of processing to figure out what God wants me to do this year. My job with Cru ends in May and I’m kind of freaking out. As I said in the last post, I just applied for an internship with IJM. I feel like applying for the internship was what God wanted, but as I continually seek Him, I’ve had to ask myself this one question — What would I do if God said “no?”
Knowing that God’s will is for me to prize Him above all else, I have to ask: Am I valuing this internship above Him? Do I think it will make me better or special? Am I only wanting it out of my flesh?
Have you ever asked yourself these questions? I don’t blame you if you haven’t because they are NOT fun to answer.
And so God asked me this question. What will you do if I say no?
So I did what I always do when God asks me this question — cry, fight, run, whatever I can but answer it. It broke my heart to think of Him saying no. Like, it physically hurt. I put it in the back of my mind, right there with the “nos” and “maybes.” Finally, God broke me until I couldn’t ignore it anymore.
What will you do if I say no?
It took a lot of fighting, but there finally came a moment of peace very much likened to being in a quiet house after a long day.
I will give it up if you ask me to.
Those were the scariest words I could have answered. Ultimately, it really does all come back to glorifying God, to valuing Him, to dying to self. The question is difficult, but it’s worth asking because it reveals your heart and shows you what you’re really worshipping.
“I want to get married!” What if God says no?
“I want to be _____ when I’m older.” What if God says no?
“I want to travel!” What if God says no?
“I want to live a safe and happy life!” What if God says no?
“I want to have kids!” What if God says no?
I don’t know if I’ll get the internship and rejoice in the resounding “yes” from God, or if I will be asked to give it up.
I don’t know. But, I ‘m so grateful that I serve a God who cares about me enough to close the wrong doors and open the right ones. I’m so glad I serve a God who is willing to break my heart because all He wants to know is if I value Him above my own life and desires.
Yes, God. I do.