Given my last post, prayer has taken on a greater focus in my life. Especially praying for unlikely outcomes. I believe (I faith) that God can perform a miracle and bring to full health even the dead.
I pray as I am able and I pray for what I want. In Leila's example, I want a complete healing for her and for her family.
But, following the example of our Lord, I also pray that God's will be done. What I deem may be best for the family (Leila's health) may not be what God knows is best or what is God's will. I do not belive that God will's our deaths or our pains. But God does will us joy and presence with Him.
So, how then should I pray? Should I pray for the miracle? Should I pray for God's will to be done? Should I pray that I come to understand God's will in any given matter?
As an Anglican, my answer to those questions is yes! I pray that God grant us a miracle. that God will intervene and bring Leila to full health and wholeness. I pray that no one will be able to deny the healing that only God can give and that others are brought to deeper faith in God through His power working on Leila and her brother. This is my intercession and my petition. In this prayer, I ask for God to work in and through us. Here is where I make my will known to God. I ask that this cup pass us by - the cup we are drinking is already sufficiently bitter.
I also pray that God will do what He knows is best for us - that His perfect will be known to us and be effected in our lives. This is the prayer of submission. Here I humbly accept that God knows better for me than I do and that He knows better for Leila and her family than I do. I submit myself to God's will. This is where I say that I will drink the cup and drain it to the dregs if that is what God wants me to do.
I also pray that I may understand God's will in this matter. I pray that, no matter what God does, that I can see where it is best for Leila, her family, my family, and me. This where where I ask God to help me drink the cup and help others drink it too (as necessary).
The cup our Lord drank on those Three Days was bitter and terrible. It was filled with pain, sin, anger, and hatred. But, out of the dregs of that cup came salvation for all who believe.
I don't know what the cup before me contains - let alone what the cup before my family contains. I don't know if it will be sweet or bitter. But I do know that God can and will use this cup before me to bring me closer to Him.
Pray that I will have the grace to minister to my extended family and help them to see that the cup will be nourishing to their souls if they ask God to help them drink it.