– Martin Luther
Strength in Submission
I knew a man who had prayed hundreds of times to escape his addiction to pornography that he battled with for decades. He tried everything, when one day, when he was about to get onto another pornographic website, but he finally decided, “I give up.” Amazingly, at that very moment, he felt that he was finally freed because he had surrendered, telling me that there is true victory only in surrender and in submitting to God.
Seeking His Will
We are told throughout the Bible to pray but what is often missing is that we’re to pray for God’s will to be done and not our own. For one thing, I don’t want my will because my will is probably not God’s will and I want His perfect will to be done in my life. I don’t have enough sense to know what to always pray for but God’s Spirit does, as the Apostle Paul wrote, “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” (Rom 8:26).
Fortress of Protection
The psalms are full of prayers for protection, probably because many were written in times of distress and many by David who was under constant threat, first from King Saul who wanted to kill him, but later, his own children who wanted to take the kingdom for themselves. This is why he prayed, “The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold” (Psalm 18:2). God is the stronghold, not the rocks or caves.
Wall of Separation
When we are a believer and living in the world, we’re bombarded with temptations to sin, and sometimes our family, friends, and co-workers don’t help. Those who are not Christian may be convicted by our living a holier life than they are and that may bother them. They want us to run with them as we did before we were saved, but that old man or woman is dead and now we’re new creations in Christ (2nd Cor 5:17).
If there was anyone in church history who needed God’s protection, it was Martin Luther, but Luther knew that submission to God was step one; then praying for His will to be done; and to have God’s protection; but also to keep us from the world and the temptations that cause us all to fall at times.