Thanks, Santa

God make me rich.

God heal me.

God handle my crazy co-worker.

God bring me a spouse.

Have you ever prayed to God like he was your heavenly Santa Claus?

I have.


But as I’ve grown older I’ve stopped treating God like he’s my personal Kris Kringle and tried more and more to pray for His will in each and every situation. I’ve stopped demanding He do things my way and now try to figure out how I fit in His eternal plan. I complain less and thank Him more.

(No, I’m not perfect in that category – I complain less (which means I still have my moments) and thank Him more (i.e. I don’t thank Him enough). But, hey – I’m a work in progress!)

In John 12: 13-14 Jesus says to his disciples: “And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.”

If we aren’t careful, we turn verse 14 into a wish list of how we want things to be in our lives. That attitude is both naïve and dangerous, because it assumes we know more than the one who created the world and everything in it.

I for one am not that smart.

Yep. It’s not about running down a wish list for God to handle every day like He is Santa pulling toys out of his sack for us. And if we ever get confused on that point and start spouting out our wish list like we are a five year old sitting on Santa’s lap, we should remember Isaiah 55:8: “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord.

I once heard Rick Burgess from the Rick & Bubba show say “It’s not about doing my will God’s way. It’s not about doing God’s will my way. It’s about doing God’s will God’s way.”

And with that attitude in mind, our prayers could sound more like these:

God thank you for meeting all my needs. Let me glorify you with any income you provide.

God thank you for the opportunity to show others your healing power in my life.

God thank you for my job. Let me show kindness and patience to everyone I work with.

God I trust you to bring me a spouse in your perfect timing, if that is your will for my life.

As we pray for specific needs, let’s start each request with “God, if it is your will…” or “God, I trust you…” or even “God, use me in this situation…” so that we can fulfill John 12:13 ~ glorifying our Heavenly Father.

And as we adjust our attitude, the peace of God – which truly does surpass all understanding – will enter into our hearts and minds and chase away fear, doubt and anxiety. It’s a daily decision to acknowledge the Creator as sovereign and holy, not as a heavenly wish granter.

Life should truly be about seeking God’s will and doing it God’s way… what a powerful yet humbling way to start each day.