Keep Believing, Keep Praying
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Bold prayers honor God, and God honors bold prayers. God isn’t offended by your biggest dreams or boldest prayers. … There is nothing God loves more than keeping promises, answering prayers, performing miracles, and fulfilling dreams. That is who He is. That is what He does. And the bigger [our prayers], the better, because God gets more glory. The greatest moments in life are the miraculous moments when human impotence and divine omnipotence intersect—and they intersect when we [pray for] impossible situations in our lives and invite God to intervene.
It is absolutely imperative at the onset that you come to terms with this simple yet life-changing truth: God is for you. If you don’t believe that, then you’ll pray small timid prayers. If you do believe it, then you’ll pray big audacious prayers. And one way or another, your small timid prayers or your big audacious prayers will change the trajectory of your life and turn you into two different people. Prayers are prophecies. They are the best predictors of your spiritual future. Who you become is determined by how you pray. Ultimately, the transcript of your prayers becomes the script of your life.
Every prayer has a genealogy. Miracles are the by-product of prayers that were prayed by you or for you. And that should be all the motivation you need to pray.
God has determined that certain expressions of His power will only be exercised in response to prayer. Simply put, God won’t do it unless you pray for it. We have not because we ask not. … The greatest tragedy in life is the prayers that go unanswered because they go unasked.
Now here’s the good news. If you do pray, all bets are off. You can live with holy anticipation because you never know how or when or where God is going to answer, but I promise you this: He will answer. And His answers are not limited by your requests. We pray out of our ignorance, but God answers out of His omniscience. We pray out of our impotence, but God answers out of His omnipotence.—Mark Batterson1
When do you really pray? I mean when you really pour out your heart to the Lord! There should be some time when you truly get in the spirit of prayer. When do you get desperate in prayer?
When I get into the spirit of prayer I usually get pretty deeply moved, and I weep and I pray and I speak in tongues and I have a connection. It’s good for your spiritual condition to know that you’ve poured out your heart to the Lord with all your heart.
The Lord wants us to be happy, and we usually are. But there should also be times when you’re not satisfied with just the usual run of things, when you really seek the Lord for a needed change and desperately pray, pouring out your heart to Him.
When was the last time you did that? How long has it been since you prayed like that? Do you ever pray like that?
When do you get deeply concerned and truly pray? When do you get concerned about your children, about those you’re ministering to, about the needs of the world, about the unsaved, and pray in the Spirit with your whole heart?
God’s Word says, “In the day that you call upon Me with a whole heart, I will answer thee.”—David Brandt Berg
George Mueller was once asked if he spent much time on his knees. He replied. “I live in the spirit of prayer. I pray as I walk about, when I lie down, and when I rise up. And the answers are always coming. Thousands and tens of thousands of times have my prayers been answered. When once I am persuaded that a thing is right and for the glory of God, I go on praying for it until the answer comes.”
This morning I found a note card tucked in the pages of my Bible months ago. ... On it, I’d scribbled a simple prayer, asking God for things that were way beyond my reach. In a time of worry (before I decided to resign from my job) I was fearful about anything financial … and it showed in the prayer.
There were about five things written on this little card—hard things I was asking God to do. None of them were expected, to be honest, debunking the idea that God only answers prayers when you have an expectant heart. Truthfully, my heart was weary. And tired. And afraid.
I expected nothing, but I hoped that God would move on our behalf.
See, I knew I needed to step out in faith, and I knew I was clinging to the sure thing, the paycheck that came twice a month, the exact amount of money that hit my bank account. I like a good plan. And here God was, asking me to lose that plan in favor of the unknown.
In favor of trusting in Him.
Even thinking about it now, I get a little nerve-wracked. My fingers tremble ever so slightly over the keys as I type the words that conjure this memory.
See, I’m not a risk taker. I wanted to know that I was not going to make it impossible for our kids to continue their education at the Christian school we love. How could God ask us to give up this sure thing? Perhaps he’d forgotten all of our expenses? Perhaps he didn’t realize we were still paying for our three moves in two years? Perhaps he didn’t have the full picture.
I laugh thinking about it now, because that really is the line of thought I clung to when I was making this crazy decision. Like God needed me to remind him of reality. Like he somehow didn’t know.
So here I am, months later, a full-time writer who teaches art in her home, who sometimes sells art prints and who has learned that God is always working to bring His will to pass in her life.
I fumbled through my Bible, one hand holding a steaming cup of coffee (dear Jesus, please don’t ever ask me to give up coffee...) and my favorite pen … And this card stared back at me.
Asking God to move. Asking for crazy blessings. Asking for what seemed like the impossible. And as I read it, I literally gasped.
Every. Single. Request. He answered. Unexpected blessings. Not at all in the way we thought they would come. Right down to the last detail … he heard me.
Don’t tell me there’s no such thing as God. Don’t tell me he doesn’t hear our prayers. Don’t believe for a second that when you speak to your Heavenly Father that those words fall on deaf ears, floating off into the cosmos somewhere.
Because if you do, I’ll hold up my note card, written in a time of pure fear, and I’ll say, “He heard me. He did abundantly more than I could ask or think. He loves me.”
And you know what? He’ll do it for you too.
He promised. And the God I know always keeps his promises.—Courtney Walsh2
Published on Anchor June 2015. Read by Gabriel Garcia Valdivieso.
Music by Michael Dooley.
1 The Circle Maker (Zondervan, 2011).