The centurion seemed to be out of options. His servant, “who was highly regarded by him, was sick and about to die (Luke 7:2, NASB).” Yet perhaps there was one option left. So he sent some Jewish elders to urge Jesus to save his servants life. The elders tell Jesus, “He is worthy for You to grant this to him; for he loves our nation and it was he who built us our synagogue (7:4-5).”
Isn’t that like us sometimes? We rationalize before God in prayer as to why he should grant our request. We plead with him to stop something awful that is about to happen, reminding him we are deserving because of the great things we have done for Him. “Look what I’ve done, Lord, for you,” we plead our case. Shouldn’t I be healed because of my deeds?
Perhaps the centurion thought the elders had more influence, but it is his friends who express his heart. “Lord, do not trouble Yourself further, for I am not worthy for You to come under my roof; for this reason I did not even consider myself worthy to come to You, but just say the word, and my servant will be healed (7:6-7).” This is a man who humbly lays his request before the Lord.
When we humbly approach the Lord in prayer, we bare our heart and acknowledge we are helpless without Him. We show our faith in the Lord to accomplish our request, to “just say the word.” Submitting to God’s will shows we trust his wisdom, even if he chooses not to grant our request.
“I say to you, not even in Israel have I found such great faith (Luke 7:9).”