“Not My Will, but Yours be Done, Jesus”
a devotional by Michelle Miller
Have you ever wanted something so desperately, a relationship, to go to a certain college, to be in the “in” crowd at school, that you prayed and prayed that God would give the thing you most desired because you felt it would be a God honoring experience? Have you justified the wanting of this thing or experience through telling God and yourself that if God gave you this specific thing, that you would use it to glorify him by telling all the popular people about Jesus, or you joining a Christian organization on campus and be a light to others at that college or by making sure you and your significant other represented a godly relationship by studying the Bible together? Now, wanting something is not a bad thing, but when wanting that specific thing becomes an idol in your life, now that is when you need to hit the brakes per say because you are putting your will over God’s Will for your life.
To say that I have never experienced wanting something so bad that I prayed and prayed about it because I thought it was the best for me would be a lie. In fact, the past fall semester of college I wanted to transfer to a different college because I thought the issues I was facing at my current college would dissipate and that I would, in essence, be fleeing temptation which is what God wants us to do right? In continuing to pray about it, I asked God for a sign, and to give me wisdom to discern what was best, but what I meant was what I thought was best and not what God thought was best for my life. God gave me an answer through an email from my career advisor, at this new college, which stated I would be better off staying at my current college because there would be too much change in a short period of time and that I would be able to save money by taking more general education requirements at my current college. After reading this email I remember being frustrated that God wasn’t giving me what I wanted. I didn’t think he understood that I wasn’t transferring for me, but for him. In reality, I was transferring solely for my own selfish desires and not for God.
In my devotions later in the week, I read Matthew 26:36-46. These ten verses are about when Jesus was in the garden of Gethsemane with Peter and the two sons of Zebedee. Jesus went there to pray to his Father that he would not have to die if it was his father’s will. While in the garden Gethsemane, Jesus prayed “‘My father, if possible, may this cup be taken from me. Yet not as my will, but as you will’” (Matt. 26:39 NIV). Jesus prays this three different times, asking that this cup be taken from him, but if it is not God’s Will that it be taken from him, so be it. In reading this, I realized that asking God for the desires of our heart is not a bad thing, but we need to be willing to let God have HIS Will be done with these desires, and not our own.
So, if you ever find yourself upset that God didn’t give you want you wanted even though YOU believed that it would have been the best thing for you, realize that God was protecting you from that thing or experience in which you thought you would fare well. The next time you pray for something, ask God that HIS Will be done, and not your own. Also, be willing to submit to the decision that God makes about this desire/experience and praise him even if the answer you received was not what YOU were looking for because he is doing what is best for you. Now, this won’t be an easy thing to do, but remember that with God, all things are possible and he always knows what is best for you.