Two weeks ago I told you the story of my friend who prayed to someday have her boss’s office. As crazy as a prayer that was (she claimed it was a “wild & crazy prayer), she did eventually get the office! But it wasn’t in the way she was expecting.
When she moved from her cubicle into the office her boss once had she was also hoping for a promotion, but all she was getting was an office. Her boss was moving to a larger office & she was just moving, but not going up the ladder.
You see – she only prayed for the OFFICE, not for a higher position, not for her boss’s job, not for a raise. Just the office.
She was excited because she could clearly see that God answered her prayer, but she also learned a valuable lesson: prayers need to be specific.
In Matthew 9:37-38 Jesus tells His disciples to pray a specific prayer:
Then he said to his disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore pray earnestly to the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. (ESV)
And alter in Matthew 26:39 we hear Jesus praying a specific prayer (despite knowing the answer was No):
And going a little farther he fell on his face and prayed, saying, “My Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me; nevertheless, not as I will, but as you will.”
Now, to my personal life example:
When I moved to Los Angeles I prayed for a job like this, “Lord, please provide a job for me.” Depending on how He chose to answer this prayer I could find myself with job offers – such as working for a porn director (yep – really happened). My prayer during that season of life was a bit more specific as I prayed for a job as a director’s assistant. Who knew I needed to be even MORE specific.
Perhaps I was meant to be some salt & light in the dark porn industry, but that gut feeling I had told me otherwise in the midst of this current season. I declined the job & continued praying for work in the film industry. I ended up working for a post-production house as a receptionist – also, not the dream.
I can’t help but wonder what life would have looked like had I prayed to be an assistant to a certain director (or a wish list of directors) – would I have gotten the opportunity? Who knows? Regardless, I learned an important lesson about praying prayers that are SPECIFIC.