I will bless the Lord at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
My soul makes its boast in the Lord; let the humble hear and be glad.
Oh, magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together!
I sought the Lord, and he answered me and delivered me from all my fears.
Those who look to him are radiant, and their faces shall never be ashamed.
If It Be Thy Will, Lord
We’ve all heard the phrase, hindsight is 20/20: our understanding of events is clearer after they happen than beforehand. For obvious reasons, this is true. But for a Christian, a deeper truth lies within this simple phrase, for in hindsight we see not only God’s provision but also His providence in our lives.
I’ve written here about my husband’s recent 14-week unemployment. Part one is a reminder that God is good all the time, in the good and the bad. Part two tells about peace, hope, and God’s faithfulness during the months of waiting; His timing is perfect. Every day we are more certain my husband found the perfect job for him.
Today I want to share a part three: how unemployment affected my prayer life. I hope it speaks to those of you who struggle with the same issues, no matter your circumstance.
When my husband lost his job, my prayer life went into overdrive. A crisis will do that! (I wish I praised Him for His goodness and mercy when things are good as much as I ask for His help and favor when they’re hard.)
The days and weeks ticked by — and believe me, I counted. I believed God had a better plan for us; that didn’t change. But patience isn’t one of my strong suits. I started to wonder how long we could make it without an income and if I was doing something wrong.
Was I praying wrong?
My prayers contained a lot of sentences that started with “Lord, I know . . . ” and finished with an observation:
- Lord, I know my husband would be an asset to this company.
- Lord, I know it would benefit our family life if my husband got this job so close to home.
- Lord, I know we’ve got enough in savings to make it this long and no more.
My prayers were full of assumptions based on what I thought I knew in my finite wisdom and void of reliance on what the Lord knew in His infinite wisdom. I finally realized I didn’t know anything, or at least not the things I thought I knew.
I needed to reevaluate my “I knows”:
- Lord, I know you love us.
- Lord, I know we can trust you.
- Lord, I know you are good and merciful.
When I began to meditate on the attributes of God, I remembered the Holy Spirit fills the gaps in our prayers (Romans 8:26); He counts it as righteousness when we believe in Him (Genesis 15:6); He doesn’t tempt us (James 1:13).
As I surrendered my will to His — “Lord, we don’t know what we’re doing but we trust You; please show us Your will” — I let go of my fear. Most of my prayers were reduced to one simple phrase: “If it be thy will, Lord.”
Because that’s all that matters.
Is there a worry in your life you need to release and simply pray,
“If it be your will, Lord”?