Genesis 22-24:Prayers, Specifically

There is so much meat in today’s reading.  I wish I had more time to write, but this is one of those days where my words must be few.

God Answers Prayer.

Chapter 24 of Genesis tells the beautiful story of how Abraham provided a wife for his beloved son, Isaac.  (Earlier in the reading Abraham obeyed God and took Isaac — the one from whom all Abraham’s descendants were supposed to flow — out to sacrifice him on a mountain!  Could YOU be that obedient with your child?  I think Abraham obeyed because in the back of his mind he KNEW that God would provide a substitute.  He even told his son that God would provide the ram.)

Sarah died when she was 127 years old.  Abraham wanted a wife for him from his own people and sent his servant to find one.

What I absolutely love about these verses is the way God answered the servant’s prayer so vividly and unmistakably.  When the servant got to Abraham’s hometown, he waited by a well and asked a very specific prayer that God would show him the specific woman He had picked out for Isaac.  But he didn’t stop there — he even asked God to answer him in a specific way by having the woman respond with certain words, sort of like a password! He asked that God would have a woman offer him a drink of water when he asked and that she would also offer to water his camels.

No sooner had his prayer been uttered than Rebekah walked up, and the action that follows makes it seem like the entire encounter was scripted by the servant’s faithful prayer.

Are you specific in your prayers? This is an area in which I need some work.  God is capable of more than we can possibly imagine.  I’d guess that he delights in surprising us with little answers to our prayers tucked away in unsuspecting places.  One way to visually see the impact of our prayers is to keep a prayer journal.  I started one about two years ago but have not kept up with it.  This passage reminds me that it is a good thing to give God specific requests.  Sometimes He answers them outright, as he did the prayer of the servant.

I will begin again with my prayer journal, and I do have some specific requests to make.  Rather than asking for my daughter to be healthy, I can ask that he help her have courage to try ___ number of new foods this week.  Instead of asking for tonight’s mom’s meeting at my house to go well, I can ask that He send the Holy Spirit in a real way, touching our hearts and allowing us to open up to each other in ways that encourage us in our homeschooling journeys so that the meeting won’t be stilted…but that it will be filled with joy, peace, and hope.

What are your specific prayers today?

2 thoughts on “Genesis 22-24:Prayers, Specifically

  1. I’ve been convicted of this in the past and never really made the changes I should have. Specific prayers are hard for me for one very big reason: the theology I was taught in the past. We went to a ‘word of faith’ type church who took it to the extreme. It took me years to break free of those thought processes and even now it still effects my spiritual walk. I was basically taught to treat God as a genie in a bottle…speak what you want and POOF! it will be done. No regard for His will or His sovereignty, just have enough faith, speak the right words, and you get what you ask. Ugh.

    SO…now I tend to OVER-generalize my prayers to leave room for God’s will and sovereignty. I (as usual!) took it to the extreme. I need to keep in mind that I can ask anything in faith while still trusting that His big picture is better than whatever I could ask or imagine!

    Thank you SO much for the reminder of praying specifically. If I’m not careful I’ll be the one who has not because she asked not…and what a shame that would be.

    1. Profound. I don’t want to be one who receives not because she asked not!

      I tend to qualify my prayers…ask the Lord to change my heart so that my will is in line with His will. He knows the desires of my heart!

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