DAILY DEVOTION, May 10, 2022
You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures (James 4:3).
James gives us an important lesson on prayer. While we are encouraged to pray for ourselves, the caution here is not to pray selfishly, seeking only to advance our pleasures. To pray for ourselves that we may better serve Jesus is a good thing. However, to pray for ourselves that we may increase our selfish wants is wrong-headed.
God promises to give us the wisdom and resources we need to live faithful and other-oriented lives. But we must ask with sincere faith, not with the desire to elevate ourselves or satisfy ourselves with pleasures. If God answered our selfish prayers, it would harm us spiritually. God will never do that. So whether we say the words or not, we always pray, “Thy will be done.” Isn’t that what we really want?
Father, I thank You for the privilege You give me to work with You in the world through prayer. May the focus of my prayers be the advancement of Your Kingdom of earth. In Jesus’ holy name, I pray, Amen.