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He Knows ... We Often Don't


In Jesus’ discussion with his disciples leading up to the “Lord’s Prayer,” he states, “Your Father knows what you need before you ask him” (Matthew 6:8). This has frequently prompted the question, “Then, why pray?”


There are many answers to why we need to pray – here is one for today: our Father knows what we need before we ask him, but we often do not.


I can’t tell you how many times I have been praying about a situation, a sin, a problem, a relationship, etc. and – through the very act of praying – God has brought new insight or conviction or wisdom into what I was praying about. For example:

  • I might pray for God to change a person I am in relationship with, and discover that I am part of the problem in unexpected ways.

  • I might be in need of direction and guidance – and the direction and guidance come when I am on my knees talking to the Lord about it.

  • I might plead for someone to be released from sin and suddenly realize that I, too, have been harboring sin in my heart.

  • I might ask God to intervene in ugly circumstances, but he might tell me that he’s not going to alter the circumstances, because he really wants to see me grow through them.


We often do not know what we need, but our Father always does. So, let’s pray.

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