John 14:13-15 KJV
13 And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
14 If ye shall ask any thing in my name, I will do it.
15 If ye love me, keep my commandments.
Is John 14:13-15 a magical formula to get anything we want? The answer is no.
God has a will or desire for all of our lives. He has one for your life and my life.
Think of Jesus in the Garden of Gethsemane (Matthew 26:36-46; Mark 14:32-42; Luke 22:39-46). He said to Peter, James, and John, “My soul is exceeding sorrowful, even unto death” (Matthew 26:38 KJV). He then “went a little farther, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt.” (Matthew 26:39 KJV) And “went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done.” (Matthew 26:42 KJV)
When Jesus says that we can ask for anything in His name, it means according to God’s character and will. One of God’s characteristics is His goodness. His goodness works together in all things for the believer (Romans 8:28). God is also omniscient—His understanding is infinite (Psalm 147:5). Could the reason we think our prayers are unanswered be because they are contrary to God’s nature and will?
For example, I could pray for a million dollars 💵 every night. But if God knows having a million dollars is not the best thing for me right now, is He going to grant that prayer request?
In other situations, a loved one or we may be going through something difficult. And we must ask ourselves—what is God’s will? Could God be bringing forth something in our lives that will bring us closer to Him or bring glory to His name, providing us with an opportunity to testify of His goodness? I encourage you to read the book of Job!
What becomes interesting is as we learn and grow in our faith, sincerely seeking God and His will, our prayers will align. And He will answer them because He is sovereign (Job 37:23)!
Interesting Fact: Something else that blew my mind is when we don’t have the words to pray, the Holy Spirit wordlessly groans for us (Romans 8:26)! And while Satan is accusing us before God day and night (Revelation 12:10), Jesus is our advocate, interceding for us at God’s right hand (Romans 8:34)!
Image by Diana Simumpande via Freely Photos