‘Ah, Lord God! It is you who have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm! Nothing is too hard for you.” (Jeremiah 32:17)
Our understanding of prayer will never be bigger than our understanding of God.
I know it’s a cliché, but the place to begin reflecting on prayer is by focusing again on the character of God. In particular, we’ll start by focusing on God’s power. We pray to a God who is able to do all things.
If we believe God is just like us, only a bit bigger and a bit stronger, the thought of prayer won’t put much fire in our bellies. If we believe God can do some things but not really all things, the scope of my prayers will be severely limited.
But the Bible’s consistent picture is that God is utterly without limits. There is literally nothing that is too hard for him. Spend some time meditating on Psalms like Psalm 93, 96, 97, 98 and 99, where God is described again and again as King – ‘the Lord of all the earth’ (97:5).
Notice what is said in Proverbs 21:1: “The king’s heart is a stream of water in the hand of the Lord; he turns it wherever he will.” Even the most powerful people on earth are comfortably within God’s control.
Ponder Paul’s majestic description of God in Ephesians 3:20: “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine…” Not just a bit more, but immeasurably more! And not just more than we ask, but more than we can even imagine! God’s power knows no limits.
It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the scale of events going on around the world – think Iraq and Syria, or Israel-Palestine, just to mention two examples. But I don’t need to look that far away – the chaotic events of my own small life can be enough to leave me feeling swamped. But nothing – not one thing – is too hard for God. He controls the events of my life and the events of geo-politics with equal ease. “Surely the nations are like a drop in a bucket; they are regarded as dust on the scales; he weighs the islands as though they were fine dust.” (Isaiah 40:15)
God can do anything and everything. It makes sense to ask for his help.
Prayer is the open admission that without Christ we can do nothing. And prayer is the turning away from ourselves to God in the confidence that he will provide the help we need. Prayer humbles us as needy, and exalts God as wealthy.” (Tozer)
Heavenly Father, I thank and praise you, for you are the sovereign King and Ruler of the whole earth. Thank you that nothing is too hard for you. Please help me to see your power and authority more clearly, so that I would be motivated to commit everything to you in prayer. In Jesus’ name. Amen.