Psalm 67 is a very popular psalm. ‘May God be gracious to us and bless us and make his face shine upon us, that your ways may be known on earth, your salvation among all nations.’ (verses 1,2). In this psalm, we see that the psalmist prays for the prosperity of his people Israel. But the underlying reason for such a prayer is that his God maybe magnified all the more among the nations. He wants his God to be known more and revered more. Though he earnestly desires fruitfulness in the land, it is still only a means to a deeper and higher desire for him- that the God of Israel may be understood and feared throughout the earth (verse 7). He wants God-fearing people not only within Israel but also among all the nations.
This tells me there is nothing wrong in praying for success, prosperity or deliverance. In fact, God is eager to give good gifts to his children who ask him (Matthew 7:11). But before we pray so, let’s ask ourselves: Why we want this answer? What are we going to do with it once we receive it from Him? Do we want the things we ask for to ultimately fulfill us and our worldly desires, or do we want them to make us better equipped to work for His kingdom and give Him glory? If we have taken an open stand against worldliness, if we have shared our faith with others, if we have taken steps out of the norm in faith, then we can pray with the psalmist here that may God be gracious to us and help us, because the world knows who we stand for and is waiting to see if our faith is real or only theoretical. By standing out from the crowd, and stepping out in faith, we are actually calling upon God to vindicate His Name. And God will see to it His Name is glorified among the nations (or whoever makes up our ‘world’). And being a true christian, this will also be our highest joy and cause for all other prayers.