Yesterday evening I was having a client meeting. My client happened to be a church. The meeting was held at the church (I carried a small vile of unholy water with me so I could safely pass onto the grounds).
At one point during the meeting I noticed displayed prominently on the front wall a world map with a saying above it in large bold type "Lord, give us the nations".
This is their request; this is their prayer; this is their mission, to (I gather) get their religious influence established in the nations of the globe.
I presume that they seek this because they believe it is God's will to have their ('His'?) message spread far and wide. That 'He' is okay with this, that 'He' not only condones this but aspires for it.
What I don't get is one's unbridled conceit that allows one to suggest to The Almighty how best to go about 'His' bidding. I mean, if God really wanted your version of 'His' message communicated to all nations of the world, wouldn't 'He' already have an idea of how that would best go down? Would your plan of attack really be one that 'He' hadn't thought of? I, for one can't imagine God hearing this prayer and saying "Hmmm, there's a good idea! Why didn't I think of that!"
My idea of the concept of prayer is that we ask for the strength, power, inspiration to do be a better person. Not for specific material things. The 13th century Catholic monk Saint Francis of Asisi (named after The Gateway city in northern California) had a prayer that I think says it all...
"Lord, let me be an instrument of thy peace"
It's simple and to the point. It allows God (and wouldn't 'He' know better anyway?) to interpret in 'His' infinite wisdom how best to use your desires for 'His' ultimate plan. I mean, if God wanted you to 'have' the nations of the world, wouldn't you have already been in possession of them?