I have known that Biblical Prayer is an important part of our prayer life, indeed we need only look as far as the Lord’s Prayer to know how very important to all of us the prayers contained in Scripture are. But to be truthful I haven’t really used them very often, preferring to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit and pray in the moment and as I felt led.
But today I found a prayer that I want to speak, a prayer that I want, even feel I need, to make my own.
It comes from Exodus 33. This is a low time for Moses. While he was up on the mountain with God, inscribing the Tablets with the Commandments the people were below making a golden calf. God had been angry enough that he proclaimed that he would no longer travel with the people. This was one of those turning points in their relationship. How much could Moses ask of God, and how bold was Moses to ask God to keep his promises to always be with the people….
And this is what Moses said to God:
Moses said to the Lord, ‘See, you have said to me, “Bring up this people”; but you have not let me know whom you will send with me. Yet you have said, “I know you by name, and you have also found favour in my sight.” Now if I have found favour in your sight, show me your ways, so that I may know you and find favour in your sight. Consider too that this nation is your people.’ He said, ‘My presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.’ And he said to him, ‘If your presence will not go, do not carry us up from here. For how shall it be known that I have found favour in your sight, I and your people, unless you go with us? In this way, we shall be distinct, I and your people, from every people on the face of the earth.’ Exodus 33: 12-16
Moses by the boldness of his prayer held God to account, reminded God of his promise to always be with them, leading them forward and keeping them safe…. and God remembered his promise…. God’s promise is greater even than his anger….. and God again promised to be with Moses and the people.
At this time when I am waiting to hear God speak, this boldness in prayer speaks to me. As I wait for God to show me the new direction in my life this demand that God keep his promise and walk with his people gives me courage.
So today, and for the next little while, based on the boldness of this prayer of Moses my prayer is:
Yet you have said, “I know you by name, and you have also found favour in my sight.” Now if I have found favour in your sight, show me your ways, so that I may know you and find favour in your sight.
as a companion to this prayer is the great hymn of faith: Guide me, O thou Great Redeemer
Guide me O thou great Redeemer, pilgrim through this barren land
I am weak but thou are mighty; hold me with the powerful hand.
Bread of heaven, bread of heaven, feed me now and ever more…feed me now and ever more.
Open now the crystal fountain, when the healing stream doth flow
let the fire and cloudy pillar lead me all my journey through
strong deliverer, strong deliverer be thou still my strength and shield…be thou still my strength and shield.
When I tread the verge of Jordan, bid my anxious fears subside;
Death of death and hell’s destruction, land me safe of Canaan’s side
Songs of praises, songs of praises, I will ever sing to thee….. I will ever sing to thee..
Lead me O God as you have promised, walk with me in this journey and prepare me to embrace the life and calling that is prepared for me. Amen.