24 Jun Psalm 80
By Adam Wiggins
What bold prayers are you praying?
In Psalm 80, we see this constant refrain – this continual crying out to God: “Restore us, O God; let your face shine, that we may be saved!” (Ps 80:3, 7, 19) This calling out to God is out of desperation. The Northern Kingdom, Israel had just been swept away, which left Judah and those in Jerusalem feeling shell-shocked over the loss of ten out of the twelve tribes of Israel. No matter their disagreements, they cried out to God to restore Israel and to show favor once again.
This was a big, bold prayer. This prayer for God to restore them was virtually impossible: economically, politically, and socially. Yet Israel had a rich history of God hearing their prayers and accomplishing the impossible on their behalf. Just think of the way God delivered them from slavery in Egypt as a response to their prayers (Exodus 3:7), or caused the walls of Jericho to fall down (Joshua 6), or the way God protected Daniel from Lions (Dan 6). The God of the Bible is a God that hears and answers prayers.
Jesus says something similar in Matthew 21:21-22: “And Jesus answered them, “Truly, I say to you, if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen. And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.”
Jesus calls his disciples to ask the impossible of God. Our God can move the mountains of our lives because He is bigger than the mountains.
Praying bold prayers means praying God-exalting, Spirit-directed, faith-filled prayers. These aren’t our wish-list items as though God is a cosmic Santa Clause. These are bold prayers asking that God will keep His promises, that He will advance His Kingdom, that he will move hearts, change lives, restore families, heal marriages, reconcile relationships, rescue the broken, and that His glory and gospel will go forward. These are big prayers that only God can do. Is it possible that Jesus was right when he said, “You do not have because you do not ask”?
So what are you praying for? How are you asking the impossible of God? How are you praying for His kingdom to come, His will be done? For me, this cuts right at the core: What neighbors should I be praying for? What friends do I have that I know are in desperate need for God to turn around their hearts? What are the mountains in our country, in our government, in our cities, in our workplaces that God alone can move?
He can do “more than we can ask or imagine” (Eph. 3:20-21). Let’s ask Him to work around us and to do the impossible.
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