“Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done,
on earth as it is in heaven.”
Most of us recognize these words as the Lord’s prayer. Recited by millions around the world, these words are easy enough to say, but meaning them can be a very different story.
“Your kingdom come…your will be done…on earth as it is in heaven.”
I have to admit this isn’t always how I pray.
If I’m honest, there are many times when I’ve prayed just the opposite as I’ve prayed that God would change His mind and do what I want Him to do…what I think will make my life better.
I remember back in college, I begged God not to send me home after graduation. Trying as hard as I could, I banged on every door that had even the slightest opportunity. Yet, God chose His way, and I returned home. While God’s will turned out to be just what I needed, at the time, I was heartbroken and angry.
Years later, I remember praying again that God would not take my Mom home to Heaven. Once again, God chose His way, and my heart was broken.
As many of you know, our family has recently undergone another life-changing event when my Dad had part of his foot removed. I’ll be honest and admit that I once again found myself asking God, “Please, don’t let this be Your will.”
Yet, here we are.
Once again, I am learning to accept and pray, “Thy will be gone on earth as it is in Heaven.”
You see, I wouldn’t be honest if I didn’t admit that I understand that sometimes it is hard to accept God’s will. While it’s easy to look back years later and say, “Oh, that’s what you were doing!” in the moment of struggle, it’s tough to say, “You’re will be done.”
In the moments before the resurrection, we see that even Jesus struggled with it as He prayed, “My Father! If it is possible, let this cup of suffering be taken away from me.” (Matthew 26:39)
Yet, setting the example for all of us, He continued to pray, “Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.”
Following Jesus’ pattern, I am learning to pray the same.
You see, it’s perfectly normal to ask God to do things our way. However, sometimes being a child of God means learning to accept when God does things His way instead of our way.
Over the last few weeks, as it seems like our personal lives are out of my control like things are changing fast and going in directions I would not have chosen, I am learning to say, “Yet I want your will to be done, not mine.”
In this surrender, I am finding strength….and peace.
I’m trusting that the same God, Who had better plans than I did in the past, also has a plan for today. Following Jesus’ example, I am learning to trust in the Lord with all my heart, lean not on my own understanding; in all my ways submit to him, and trust that he will make my paths straight. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
Today, I don’t know what you are going through. Maybe you, too, are finding it difficult to reconcile your will with God’s will.
Can I encourage you today to take a chance and pray with me, “Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven”?
Will you, too, choose to follow Jesus’s example and say, “I want your will to be done, not mine.”
It’s a brave prayer, but it is a prayer God will honor.
We can rely on His Word that as we trust in Him, He will do what is best.
Adessa Holden is an ordained minister with the Assemblies of God specializing in Women's Ministry. Together with her brother, Jamie, they manage 4One Ministries and travel the East Coast speaking, holding conferences, and producing Men's and Women's resources that provide practical Biblical teaching for everyday life.
When asked about herself, she'll tell you "I'm a women's minister, a sister, and a daughter. I love to laugh and spend time with people. My favorite things are chocolate, the ocean, sandals and white capris, anything purple, summertime and riding in the car listening to music. It is my absolute honor and privilege to serve Jesus and women through this ministry.