– E.M. Bounds
The Mighty Hand of God
James once wrote that we must humble ourselves and submit ourselves to God and that He will draw near to us, but we must come to God with clean hands (James 4:7-10), knowing that it is only the prayers of a righteous person that can access the power of God (James 5:16-18). This is part of the way we can put God’s work into His hands and not take it over ourselves, for if we seek to do God’s work and do it by our own hands or in our strength, then we are not doing His work according to His will; we are doing our own. First things first, however. We must submit ourselves under the authoritative and sovereign hand of the mighty God (1 Pet 5:6).
Earthly and Heavenly Dominion
God gave us dominion over those things done on the earth (Gen 1:26, 28; Psalm 8:6), even though this dominion must still be done within the parameters of the will of God, but finding God’s will on earth is not so much seeking anything different from that which is already being done in heaven. Even though God has placed everything under mankind’s feet, it doesn’t mean that includes God Himself because He has placed all things under Christ’s authority (1 Cor 15:27) since God has put all things under Christ’s feet and made Him the Head of the Church (Eph 1:22). We pray for God’s work to be done in His own hands while doing what we perceive is His will on earth.
Placing It in God’s Hands
Martin Luther once wrote that he held many things in his hands, but whatever he had placed in God’s hands he still possessed. We could say the same thing about our prayer requests. Anything our hands lift up to God in prayer to ask for we ultimately must trust God’s hands as completely trustworthy to do in His perfect will and leave it at that. What is better than having God’s hands do what He pleases and is His will? I wouldn’t want to do what I can do with my own hands that isn’t better done in the sovereign will, plan, and purpose of God. Would you?
The Hands of Heaven
If we really believe God, we’ll leave His working all things out in His hands, for we know that everything ultimately works out for our best, even if we don’t see it at the time (Rom 8:28). E.M. Bounds is right: “Prayer puts God’s work in his hands–and keeps it there.” I wouldn’t want it any other way. How about you?