Praying for the Will of God
Seventeenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Year C
“And I tell you, ask and you will receive; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” Luke 11:9
If we were to take this statement of Jesus in a very literal way we could easily conclude that Jesus will give us anything we ask for in a prayerful way. But we know this is not what happens. Perhaps everyone has prayed hard for this or that and the request was not answered in the way we wanted. Why is that? Did we simply fail to pray with faith? Will Jesus do whatever we ask of Him when we pray for it with all our might? Certainly not.
This passage goes on to say, “If you then, who are wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the Father in heaven give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him?” (Luke 11:13). Within this context, and within the context of everything that Jesus has taught us, it’s important to know that there is one thing and one thing only for which we ought to pray. And when we pray for this one thing, we can be assured of obtaining it when we pray for it in faith. What is that one thing? It’s the will of God.
If we sincerely and wholeheartedly ask for and seek the will of God, we can be certain that our Lord will give us the Holy Spirit and that the Holy Spirit will, in turn, lead us into the will of God for our lives. The problem is that too often we end up praying that “MY will be done” rather than “THY will be done.” This is an important difference.
True prayer is ultimately about trust and surrender to God. We trust in His perfect plan and surrender to that perfect plan in our lives. When we do this, we can be assured that the Lord will hear and answer this perfect prayer.
Reflect, today, upon that simple prayer in the Lord’s Prayer: Thy will be done! Strive to trust in God’s perfect plan for your life and do all you can to surrender to it. With this form of prayer we can be assured that the Holy Spirit will come to us, leading us into His holy will.
Jesus, I trust in You.