Likewise, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.
She was trying to work her way up in the local real estate community, but it was not an easy ambition to fulfill. Her goal was to bill herself as a certain kind of agent who sold a certain kind of property to a certain kind of clientele. Now, a skill any successful agent must develop is the ability to find the right property for the client. Time after time she would show her clients these amazing homes, but she just could not sell. She thought perhaps she simply was not working with the right clients. The real problem, however, was that her clients were not working with the right agent. While she had the desire to find the perfect home for each one, this was based on her idea of what should suit them. Thinking she knew better and trying to impress them, she simply failed to bring the clients what they wanted.
Prayer is our opportunity to partner with God and call forth that which He desires. So many times we simply ask God to do what we want, but that is not the right attitude. Of course there are times when our desires will line up with God’s desires, and that is the optimum place for us to be spiritually. However, we must understand that prayer serves God’s purposes and not ours. If we really know him, then we know that everything He does glorifies himself and advances his kingdom. Those simple principles should guide our prayer, but we also must go even further. We need to be able to hear from God so that we can pray according to his desires. We also need to be available to the Spirit praying through us when we do not have the words to express that which the Father wants.
If we are even just a little wise, we will surely admit that God knows infinitely better than we do. I might have my ideas of what should happen to please him and move his kingdom forward, but I cannot unilaterally request whatever I think fits that bill. A large component of our prayer life is discernment. We can spend our time praying for what we desire or for what God desires, and I think we know which one will be more fruitful and worth our time. It is his grace which allows us to partner with him in prayer, and we must be good stewards of that opportunity by honoring him in that process. Father, make us people who desire only what You also desire, and give us the words and willingness to bring forth your will through prayer.