Prayer changes lives. And yet by definition, perhaps even by practice, prayer is reduced to us simply asking God for things. Moses experienced so much more than a question and answer session when he turned to investigate the burning bush. His prayer session became an opportunity to be changed by God. As he was changed Moses would have the opportunity to get to know the God of his childhood. Should this be an expectation when we pray today?
Handshake picture By Rufino (hermandad - friendship) [CC BY-SA 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Part III: God Introduces Himself
Though adopted by an Egyptian, Moses was raised by his Hebrew mom (Exodus 2:1-10). While serving as his nurse, Moses' mother most likely taught him about God. We are not told what Moses believed before the burning bush but clearly he shows reverence as God introduces Himself.
This introduction was an important start to Moses' lifelong conversation. It was an opportunity for Moses to get to know the God of his childhood, an opportunity that continued as he learned of God's desire to end the suffering of the people of Israel. As He did with Moses, God uses prayer to introduce Himself to us today. We need only to show the same reverence and desire to listen as shown by Moses as he hid his face.
"And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son." John 14:13
According to Jesus prayer is an opportunity to see God glorified in our lives. I believe His intent was to encourage a conversation where we desire more than just receiving answers to our requests. In fact the context of chapter 14 is how we can see the Father today and can go to a place prepared for us in the kingdom where we will be with Him forever. In answering Phillips' question about revealing the Father, Jesus talks about answering prayer. In this context prayer is about God revealing (being glorified) to us.
The Bible encourages to make our requests known to God. But if all you expect is to receive things or to have your own way, you are missing out. Prayer is about seeing the glory of the Father.You should come into prayer with the expectation that, "The God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob," will reveal Himself to you.
Part I: A Conversation With God
Part II: Take Off Your Shoes