This series, Progression of Prayer, was inspired by the excellent bible study by Kristin Schmucker, "Arise, A study on the Book of Nehemiah".
“…please let Your ear be attentive and Your eyes open, to hear the prayer of Your servant which I am praying before You now, day and night, for the children of Israel Your servants, and confess the sins of the children of Israel which we have sinned against You. Both my father’s house and I have sinned. We have acted very corruptly against You, and have not guarded the commands, nor the laws, nor the right-rulings which You commanded Your servant Moses.” Nehemiah 1:6-7
In Part 2 of the Progression of Prayer, we read of Nehemiah’s request for the Lord to hear, see and be attentive to his prayers. Which is interesting, as if the Lord maybe wouldn’t have been.
So perhaps his request boosted his courage a bit. He’d already been diligent and thoughtful in his prayers up until now. I believe he knew His God, and knew Him to be merciful, but what was coming next was very important. He needed to submit to Him. Confess and acknowledge his imperfections, his sin. Not only his own, but also those of his family, and those of Israel, the nation in which he was rooted deeply.
It can be difficult to face up to our own sins against God, but to also carry the weight of them for our brothers and even our nation? That’s heavy, man.
So by asking God to hear, see and be attentive to my confession seems to me to clear my heart of presumption, acknowledging that I know that He knows that I know that I’m not perfect. That I also know that He has chosen me for a purpose. That I’m here on this earth by His design and intention. That I truly desire to follow Him and His instructions for carrying out my part of His plan. That I so much need His help with that.
It’s a heavy serious consideration how we approach our Father, Who is also Creator of all. I feel very daughterly toward Him. At the same time I feel humble before the One Who contains all the power possible and yet, having experienced it, know that His first choice is mercy mercy mercy.