Willing
By Marilynn Chadwick

“He fell with his face to the ground and begged him, ‘Lord, if you are willingyou can make me clean.’” —Luke 5:12 NIV

Jesus, are you willing to heal me? The man was desperate. He was covered with leprosy – a terminal case. His condition was hopeless. Lepers were untouchables, so he was ostracized. An outcast. Jesus was his last-ditch effort. Face in the dirt, he crushes any remnant of pride... and begs. His plea is to the point. Just 10 words. “Lord, if you are willing, you can make me clean.” Jesus answers in half as many words and ignites a miracle. “I am willing. Be clean!”

Another translation puts it this way: “‘If you want to, Lord, you can make me clean.’ Jesus stretched out his hand, placed it on the leper, saying, ‘Certainly I want to. Be clean!’” (Luke 5:12-13 Phillips).

Notice Phillips uses the word “want” instead of “willing.” The Greek word used here, thelo, can mean “want, will, desire,” or even “wish.” Thelo also indicates a “pressing on to action.” Jesus not only wanted to and was willing to heal the guy. He executed. Without hesitation.

The word “beg,” or deomai, describes a specific, urgent prayer. So the leper’s plea is also a prayer. His answer came swiftly. The desperate cry for healing was consistent with the will of God for that man in that moment.

Alignment with God’s will is a vital component of prayer, as Jesus taught his disciples:

“Pray, therefore, like this: Our Father Who is in heaven, hallowed (kept holy) be Your name. Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven” (Matthew 6:9-10 AMPC).

In the original language, this prayer is in the imperative tense – more of a demand than a request: “Kingdom come! Your will be done on earth as in heaven!” It’s as if Jesus wants us to shake our fist and shout a bit as we claim God’s will to be done on an earth still crawling with enemies.

God’s will is done perfectly in heaven. So heaven should be the model for our earthly prayers. My short answer on how to know God’s will? Read his Word. Saturate your mind daily. Grow so close to your Good Shepherd that you know his will, pray his will,obey his will.

This is calledabiding – and it’s the secret to a power-filled prayer life. Are you willing?


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