On Sunday, we focused intently on the prayer of Nehemiah from Nehemiah 1:4-11. In our passage today, we see a prayer that we can learn a lot from to reinforce what we looked at on Sunday.
15 And Hezekiah prayed before the Lord and said: “O Lord, the God of Israel, enthroned above the cherubim, you are the God, you alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth; you have made heaven and earth. 16 Incline your ear, O Lord, and hear; open your eyes, O Lord, and see; and hear the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to mock the living God. 17 Truly, O Lord, the kings of Assyria have laid waste the nations and their lands 18 and have cast their gods into the fire, for they were not gods, but the work of men’s hands, wood and stone. Therefore they were destroyed. 19 So now, O Lord our God, save us, please, from his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that you, O Lord, are God alone.” 2 Kings 19:15-19 (ESV)
This prayer doesn’t explicitly fit into the ACTS format (Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication), but the prayer does begin and end with God. Prayer is all about God! So often we come to God and treat him as a magic genie, simply asking him to provide for your needs. But prayer in the Bible is explicitly God-centered.
He says in verse 15, “O Lord, the God of Israel, enthroned above the cherubim, you are the God, you alone, of all the kingdoms of the earth; you have made heaven and earth.” This preceded the request made in verse 16, and his plea in verses 18 & 19, and he closes with acknowledging God again in verse 19.
If nothing else, we can remember that when we bring our requests to God, we should be much more focused on the God who answers than the problem that needs answering. This reflects a heart of trust and love for God, and that your focus is more on God than yourself and your current situation.
What does your prayer life say about how you are relating to God?
By: Graham Withers — Pastoral Ministry Apprentice