Amazingly, God had already prepped me today for Mother’s prodding. This morning He spoke to me in my prayer time and gave me a three point sermon. Since I don’t preach, I knew it must be meant for Prayerfully Penned.
My three points in less than 20 minutes
We pray in many ways, at different times and for different reasons. Today, I was reminded of an essential three. Regardless of the day or season, I should always pray about my will, willpower, and wisdom.
1. Philippians 2:13 teaches us that it is God who works in us to will and to act for His good pleasure. God works in us to will. That means He works in our hearts to put the desires there that He wants us to have. When I was just a teen, He revealed this truth to me at a youth revival. I can honestly say it was the first verse that made a serious impact on my life. I realized, perhaps for the first time, that I was worshipping a living God, one that had access to my heart, one that could change my heart. Thankfully He did. Even now, however, I don’t always desire the right things. My will is innately selfish. So the first prayer point I should be sure I hit every day is to ask God to align my will to His.
2. Willpower is the energy to act upon the will. If I want to work out, but never act upon it then my will is not exercised and neither is my sagging body. To act on what we want takes more than want. It takes drive, determination, energy and self-discipline. These seem to be directly proportional to the strength of my desire. I may want a lot of things, but only those I want badly enough will I actually pursue. For example, a day doesn’t go by that I don’t find a way to eat. Even if I’ve been working around the house all day and have no food in the refrigerator to prepare, I’ll order a pizza. I’m pretty determined when it comes to eating. Philippians 2:13 says God works in me not just to want to do the right things, but He works in me to the point of doing them. So I need to pray every day for the energy, drive and determination to accomplish the desires He has put in my heart. I must ask Him to strengthen my will so that it becomes powerful to the point of action.
3. Finally, I was reminded to pray for wisdom. We can have the right desires and an abundance of energy, yet remain fruitless for Him. God has given me the will and the willpower to speak boldly of the truth of His Word. But if I do not have wisdom with regard to audience, timing and word choice, I may not only be ineffective I may do damage. I may also neglect other God-given desires in the process. To be most effective for God we must be wise. We must seek His mind to make decisions that glorify Him. “For the LORD gives wisdom…” (Pr 2:6) These days, many people are quick to share their worldly advice, but God is the only source of true wisdom. Last month I talked about this topic on “Fresh Start”, a weekly webcast hosted by my friend Karol Ladd. If you’d like to hear more about wisdom by viewing last month’s show, click here. Wisdom comes from God, and He longs to give it in abundance to those who ask Him.
As a former educator of children, I spoke often of the three R’s. As an educator of believers, I’m speaking today of the three W’s: will, willpower, and wisdom. I pray they transform your prayers as they are mine.