“And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.” (1 John 5:14,15)
Does praying for God’s will to be done mean there is not even a need to pray, since God is going to do what God is going to do? True prayer is engagement with God. We bring our hopes and fears and desires before Him. We may know up front what His will is; but that doesn’t mean we don’t pray for strength to accomplish it. Of course, we would always want what is easy and painless, but is the easy route always God’s will for us? When we pray for God’s will to be done it may be a matter of not knowing what He has for us; or it may mean accepting whatever it is while trusting Him for the strength we need.
If we’re wanting God’s favor, we must pray for His will to be done. There is no such thing as God’s favor outside of His will. Likewise, there is no blessing. Our thoughts are not always God’s thoughts. There is also a way that seems right to us that is not right to God. When we pray for God’s will to be done we are asking Him to overrule our will if it is unaligned with His. We are understanding that we can “ask amiss.” God is not duty-bound to answer every prayer that ends “in Jesus’ Name.” We can ask God for whatever we desire, but He always has the final say. We will have the petitions we desire of Him IF we are asking “according to His will.”
Yes, God does want us to believe He keeps His promises and is true to His Word. But He also wants us to trust in Him with all our heart and not lean to our own understanding. We will never hold God hostage with His Word. The idea of placing demands upon God is abhorrent. As much grace and privilege we have as children of God, He will always remain the Father who “works all things after the counsel of His own will.” (Eph. 1:11) He has not simply given us laws and principles that we are to apply in order to get the life we deem best. He is an infinitely wise and good Being who calls us to engage with Him. He wants us to know Him in an ever-increasing degree. He is known when He says, No; as well as when He says, Yes.