One of the vivid memories I have of my childhood is waking to the smell of homemade oatmeal bread. There is nothing like it… it’s the aroma of home, and family, warmth, and mom’s love. When you had a piece with butter or homemade jelly on it, it was a meal in itself. I could almost live all day on the memory alone!
Now if my mom’s bread could do that, imagine what the daily provision of ‘our Heavenly Father’ could do?
Jesus understood this well when He told His disciples how to pray. He said to remember to respond to God in gratitude for ‘All’ He provided, every day, which sustains us. And He wasn’t just blowing smoke either… He lives this way every moment of everyday. His example was the very reason the disciples asked Him to tell them how to have the same relationship He had with our ‘Abba.’
When ‘the tempter came to Jesus in the desert, after He had fasted now for 40 days, Satan said to Him, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.” Or more simply, ‘let your appetites and desires be your motivation; You don’t need to run to God, You can do it all by yourself… You are the Son…right?’ But Jesus responded, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” (Matthew 4:3-4). Jesus understood, and He wanted His disciples to know the same truth, that leaving God out and relying on our appetites and willfulness will take us to a dark place of self righteousness; a place that ‘steels’ over your heart and leads you to believe the lie that you provided ‘all’ these things for yourself. To avoid this cold life of ingratitude we must follow the example of Jesus, praying daily to ‘our Father’; continuing to remember, that in ‘back of the bread is the snowy flour, and in back of the flour, the mill; and in back of the mill is the field of wheat, the rain, and our Father’s will’ (stedman).
God doesn’t need our prayers… we need to pray. And in our prayer of gratitude and thankfulness we are reminded of His daily provision of knowledge, understanding, discernment, self control, courage, perseverance, patience, strength, moral excellence, godliness, kindness, and love… all established in His Word.
You want to see prayer win the day? Then follow Jesus’ example of putting aside our own appetites and willfulness and live off of every Word that proceeds from the mouth of God.
“For I have stayed on God’s paths; I have followed his ways and not turned aside. I have not departed from his commands, but have treasured his words more than daily food” (Job 23:11-12).
Praying 4 U
Written by David Brown: David Brown is a husband, father, grandfather, Pastor with a Masters of Religious Studies and a Professor of Philosophy and Comparative Religions. Dave is the Associate Pastor of Pemberton’s First Baptist Church. He is the author of two devotional books, “From a Chair by the Window.” And “#PrayerWinsThe Day”.
Think About This: “He graces you with good things because he is good, not because you are.” ―