Today's Thoughts: An Answer to Prayer
Then he said, "O Lord God of my master Abraham, please give me success this day, and show kindness to my master Abraham. Behold, here I stand by the well of water, and the daughters of the men of the city are coming out to draw water. Now let it be that the young woman to whom I say, 'Please let down your pitcher that I may drink,' and she says, 'Drink, and I will also give your camels a drink'--let her be the one You have appointed for Your servant Isaac. And by this I will know that You have shown kindness to my master." Genesis 24:12-14
The prayer that Abraham's servant prayed is called a "fleece." The New Unger's Dictionary describes a fleece as "the wool of a sheep, whether on the living animal, shorn off, or attached to the flayed skin." The miracle of Gideon's fleece (Judges 6:37-40) consisted of the dew having soaked the fleece once, without any on the ground, whereas at another time the fleece remained dry while the ground was wet with dew. Literally, fleece means the wool of a sheep. However, today we call certain prayers a "fleece" because Gideon used a "fleece" (or the wool of sheep) to have God confirm His will in a specific manner to him: the fleece needed to be wet even though the ground was dry and then the fleece needed to remain dry even though the ground was wet.
Is it ok to pray for a fleece today? I have asked God for many fleeces because I wanted God's clear direction in making decisions. There have been prayers that I have prayed for years without any need of a sign. But there have been others that I have prayed and received verses and confirmation, but I still wanted more clarification and direction. At this point, I pray a fleece and I have clearly seen God move to show me His will. Know that when you pray a fleece, you have a higher accountability to God. I have learned not to flippantly pray for a fleece. I ask for wisdom, I pray for wise counsel from others, I search His Scriptures and pray continually before resorting to a fleece. I am this hesitant because sadly I have to say that God has been more faithful to answer my fleeces than I have been faithful to be obedient with His answer. Dealing with the consequences of not following the Lord was more difficult than not knowing His will in a matter and just trusting Him for the outcome.
God is a personal God and He wants to answer specific prayers. He will lead you. He will answer you. He loves for you to seek His specific will. And He promises to answer when we call. If He doesn't answer your fleece, then it wasn't time to ask for one. Keep trusting as you ask, seek and knock. The door will be opened and you will know the answer, if you really want to know it or not! But, once you know, be careful to be obedient!
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