September 30, 2018

The End of Prayer

1 Chronicles 29:10-20

Yours, Lord, is the greatness and the power and the glory and the majesty and the splendor. . . . Yours, Lord, is the kingdom. . . .

—  1 Chronicles 29:11

Here, at the end of this month, we have reached the end of our reflections on prayer. This reminds me that the word end can have two meanings. It can mean that something has stopped, and it can also refer to a main purpose.

So let’s consider the end of prayer. The traditional conclusion to the Lord’s Prayer, as prayed by the church for many hundreds of years, goes like this: “for yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.” This expresses the focus of prayer and the goal of our lives. As in life, the purpose of prayer is to keep us centered on God—to have our heart turned to the One who has first turned his heart toward us.

This is what David prayed for shortly before he died. He acknowledged that God alone is King. He prayed that the desire to serve God would always be found in people’s hearts. His prayer at the end of his life conveys what the end—the main purpose—of our lives should be: the glory of God.

So by our prayers and in our lives, let us acknowledge God’s glory. Let us seek the peace and justice of his kingdom and submit to God’s greatness. Let us pray that God will use even us to spread his glory everywhere until his kingdom has finally come!

Lord, “yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever”! Thank you for the assurance that guides my prayer and strengthens my life. May I dedicate my whole being to you, now and forever. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

About the author — Peter Hoytema

Peter Hoytema has been a pastor for nearly 30 years and has served congregations in Ontario and New Jersey. He is currently the pastor of a congregation in Strathroy, Ontario. He is a graduate of Calvin Theological Seminary and San Francisco Theological Seminary. He and his wife, Grace, are the parents of four adult children.

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