“We do not make requests of you because we are righteous, but because of your great mercy.” Daniel 9:18.
Verse chosen from today’s Bible reading: Daniel 9-10, Psalm 123, and Luke 5.
How do we approach God?
Think back of the story of the two men praying. One faces skyward and recites what he has done. The other won’t even look up because of his sin.
How often do we appear before God with the attitude of the first man? We assume that God has noticed our goodness and will respond accordingly. Praying like that is a waste of time.
Our approach in prayer must be like Daniel’s. He didn’t assume that God “owed” him. He assumed just the opposite. Daniel knew that there was nothing he had done that would put God in his debt. Daniel was a sinner like all the rest of us.
We deserve nothing from God. We are in the “all have sinned” category along with the rest of humanity.
This didn’t stop Daniel from approaching God. On what basis? Daniel knew that God was also merciful. His love for His people often overrode the justice they deserved. Daniel begged for that mercy.
Daniel identified himself as a sinner. This is where I need to start from when I pray. The possibility that I may be having a day in which I please Him still does not erase my past. I will always be a sinner. So I approach God from the position of being totally undeserving of anything from Him. BUT I know that He is merciful. I plead for that mercy on my behalf.
“Lord, You are amazing. I will never be worthy of anything good from You. Yet Your mercy often overrides Your justice and I am blessed beyond measure. Forgive my arrogance in approaching You as deserving of Your goodness. How are You able to put up with any of us??”
“Lord, have mercy on me a sinner.”