Authentic Prayer: Mercy

Authentic Prayer: Mercy

We are not requesting this from you because we are righteous, but because you are very compassionate. Listen to us, Lord. Forgive us, Lord. Pay attention, and act. Don’t delay!
Daniel 9:18-19

If not for God’s mercy, you would have no reason to pray.

As Daniel admits, all human beings have “sinned, done wrong, acted wickedly, rebelled, and turned away from your commandments and laws” (Daniel 9:5). Yet his mercy rebuilds a relationship with you through Christ, whose death on the cross allows God to forgive you and invite you near. Because the Lord is full of mercy, he welcomes you into his presence (Hebrews 10:19-23).

The apostle Paul once explained to his friend Titus that mercy drives God to rescue humankind (Titus 3:3-6). His compassion makes him reach out to the miserable… lost… rebellious… entrapped… broken. When Daniel asks the Lord to raise Jerusalem from the ruins of a lost war with the Babylonian Empire, he doesn’t try to win God’s favor with human goodness. He appeals to God’s abundant compassion. He asks the Lord to listen… forgive… pay attention… act.

You can’t approach God on your own merit. You need his mercy. Before you think of asking the Lord for anything, first thank him for his compassion.

Inspired by Daniel 9:1-19

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