More Than Wishing

Five Children And It

Your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him. —Matthew 6:8 

As a child, C. S. Lewis enjoyed reading the books of E. Nesbit, especially Five Children and It. In this book, brothers and sisters on a summer holiday discover an ancient sand fairy who grants them one wish each day. But every wish brings the children more trouble than happiness because they can’t foresee the results of getting everything they ask for.

The Bible tells us to make our requests known to God (Philippians 4:6). But prayer is much more than telling God what we want Him to do for us. When Jesus taught His disciples how to pray, He began by reminding them, “Your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him” (Matthew 6:8).

What we call “The Lord’s Prayer” is more about living in a growing, trusting relationship with our heavenly Father than about getting what we want from Him. As we grow in faith, our prayers will become less of a wish list and more of an intimate conversation with the Lord.

Toward the end of his life, C. S. Lewis wrote, “If God had granted all the silly prayers I’ve made in my life, where should I be now?”

Prayer is placing ourselves in the presence of God to receive from Him what we really need.

David McCasland

We grasp but a thread of the garment of prayer;
We reel at the thought of His infinite care;
We cannot conceive of a God who will say:
“Be careful for nothing; in everything pray.”


Our highest privilege is to talk to God; our highest duty is to listen to Him.

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