Have you positioned yourself for God’s call to more?
The position we need to hear and understand God’s call to more is a prayer position. The trouble is: most workplace leaders (including pastors) are simply too busy to learn and practice prayer. If that is not you, it is someone you know and love.
Allow me to share a method of positioning prayer that has been particularly helpful to me. We will do that in (at least) two parts; beginning with the model for positioning that Jesus left us.
Now it came to pass, as He was praying in a certain place, when He ceased, that one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John also taught his disciples.” So He said to them, “When you pray, say:
Our Father in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
Your kingdom come.
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven.
Give us day by day our daily bread.
And forgive us our sins,
For we also forgive everyone who is indebted to us.
And do not lead us into temptation,
But deliver us from the evil one.” —Luke 11:1-4
Notice that the disciple did not ask Jesus “how to pray.” Interestingly, “how” is a very common word in the Bible. In fact, it appears 550 times in the New King James Version. So why is it absent here?
I am convinced, and I hope you will consider, that the disciple was asking for more than instruction in prayer. He recognized that Jesus’ way of prayer was so far removed from their own that what they had been calling prayer might as well have been called “apple.”
The disciple was asking Jesus to make them men of prayer. This He has promised to do—for them and those that desire to know God’s purpose and plan for this season of transition.
Jesus’ way of prayer was about life and relationship. It availed much. It was full of humility and trust. Matthew records His thoughts on the contrasting prayers of men.
And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words. Therefore, do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him. —Matthew 6:7-8
The prayers of men are about men, and what men want. The prayers of Jesus were (and are) about the Father, and what the Father wants. In this saying, Jesus reveals that learning to pray, at its core, is more about finding the right position before the Father than about what we have to say.
“The Model Prayer” is a model of prayer for our positioning. It is through this model that we come into the Father’s presence – in humility, meekness and total dependency on Him. Without this positioning, all that we have to say are the vain repetitions of man.
When we choose to desire what He desires, we find that the desire of His heart is relationship.
Many who are following Jesus—even for many years—have yet to make this prayer a part of their life in Him. It takes diligence and perseverance. Most of all, it takes a passionate desire for eternal life—to know God and His Son (John 17:3). If we will be soft before Him, He will give us the desires of our heart (Psalm 37:4).
The fervent prayer of a righteous man begins in the proper position: In abject humility, meekness, patience and trust before God. I pray that you find that position soon and often.
Rob Streetman / Rob Streetman is the president of inLight Consulting and is author of The Map Maker. He is called to encourage, edify and equip Workplace Leaders as disciple makers and transformation agents. He began inLight in 2005, after 25+ years in the IT industry.