I’ve been spending time with George Muller, reading his personal journals, because his faith is a boost to mine. Do you know he began orphanages for the main purpose of showing people how to trust in God? So he had a plan to pray for the needs of the school and solicit no funds. In this way people could see the provision of God.
Except there was a season where God’s provision started to come in shorter spurts, until finally it was coming in only by the day and finally by the very hour in which there was a need for funds.
This was a great trial of faith, even for Pastor Muller, so he prayed and listed eleven reasons why God should answer his prayer for money for the orphan houses. For example, reason #2 was “that God is the ‘Father of the fatherless,’ and that he, therefore, as their father, would be pleased to provide.”
God never tells us to try to reason him into prayer. He just says “ask.”
Yet all through Scripture people make requests of God and then give God reasons why he should answer their prayers. Nehemiah asks God to help the Israelites because “they are your servants and your people…” (Nehemiah 1:10 NIV) In Psalm 143:11 (NIV) David begins with a because: “For your name’s sake, O Lord, preserve my life…” Jesus prays for God to glorify him. For what reason? “…that your Son may glorify you.” (John 17:1 NIV)
Of course, in order to present a persuasive argument, a person has to sort out the reason he’s asking the prayer in the first place. It doesn’t hold much water to say reason #6 is because you just “stinkin’ want what you’re praying for so badly.”
No, we have to find reasons that come straight from God himself.
Like the reason that what we’re praying for will bring glory to him.
Or because it is within the promises of God.
Or because it will result in much fruit for the kingdom.
That thing you’ve been praying for –can you think of eleven reasons, founded on the truths of God, why he should answer your prayer?
I’ll tell you, by the time you’re jotting down #11, your soul will have undergone a transformation. That’s reason enough to make a list.