If you’ve ever had a prayer answered then you now what I mean by the time for prayer is now. Even if a prayer doesn’t seem to be getting answered and sometimes we notice a delay, it always gets answered whether we like the answer or not. But sometimes God answers our prayers right away.
So the question that plagues me is why we don’t ask and pray more often? If God answers our prayers, then why don’t we pray right now?
The promise that God gives us in regards to prayer is a huge promise.
Jesus said that anything we ask in His name will be given to us so that it may glorify God (John 14:13-14); yet, a lot of times we will sit around groaning and complaining rather than asking, seeking, and knocking through prayer. (Matthew 7:7-12) Even worse, sometimes we’d rather gossip than to pray.
I feel like sharing our feelings with God through prayer is a good thing, and is probably one of the most helpful ways we can draw closer to Him, and not spill out our emotions to a world that can’t solve our problems without Jesus, and definitely not without prayer. So, journaling my feelings has helped me grow in my walk tremendously, and it has helped my relationships, too.
However, sometimes in prayer we share our feelings without sharing the desires of our heart with God.
I truly believe God will answer any prayer that we pray in order to help someone else draw closer to Him. Why wouldn’t He answer that prayer? If we prayed for someone else to overcome their insecurities, or to tell the truth, and to even overcome their addiction or pride; God will honor those prayers because He cares about His children, too. Yet, there is so much that goes into all of this; and for whatever reason, if God won’t answer our prayer the way we hope then we can know that His grace is sufficient to sustain us through whatever trial we might be facing right now, or for whomever we are praying for. (2 Corinthians 12:9)
Although, some of the tragic moments in life often leave us with the reality that sometimes it is simply too late for prayer; events happen too fast that we don’t have enough time to pray for other people, our relationships, and for this world. Or maybe we just didn’t take the time to pray for what was truly pressing on our heart. Prayer is how we connect with God in this life, and it is how we move mountains in this life, too. We know that The Lord will answer our prayers when they line up with God’s will, and we know that God is all about setting captives FREE.
Sometimes the only reason we are experience drawbacks, setbacks, and staying in bondage is because we aren’t even approaching the throne of grace with our prayers. (Hebrews 4:16)
Here are three reasons why we aren’t praying, and why that needs to change, today:
- We are holding onto an offense, or someone is holding a grudge against us. There is nothing like an offense to truly affect our prayer life. This is where handing my emotions over to God can turn my prayer into a “complaint fest” and this is where my bitterness can easily be seen by God. In these moments the best thing God can do for me is to make my life a mirror, and show me how much of a hypocrite I am. I really dislike it when God does this because I feel truly justified in being offended, and maybe I am justified, but using that justification to slander someone else with my thoughts and words during my prayer time isn’t going to help me to get the results that I am looking for in this life. There will be no breakthrough in my relationships; but if my heart is soft enough to The Lord’s promptings then there will be a breakthrough in my heart. Sometimes this is just the first step in the process of finally praying for people and not against them; however, we are also very capable of staying stuck in our offenses, and our prayer life, if we aren’t careful.
- Shame and guilt are holding us back. The Bible says that evil hates the light because the light will reveal someone’s sin. (John 3:20) Sometimes we need to be reassured that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love (Romans 8:31-39), and His grace is sufficient to cover our mistakes in life. (2 Corinthians 12:9) The best thing we can do is to confess our sins and repent in this case. (James 5:16-17) Let’s be honest, authentic, and live a life of integrity. I feel there is so much hope when we are in this very difficult time in our life. Sometimes the guilt can weigh on us and it can often feel like it will consume us; but God is so much bigger!
- Our faith has been damaged, or maybe we have lost faith altogether. Sometimes the lack of prayer in our lives is simply because we don’t believe enough to pray to God. Sometimes we lose our faith in people, the church, or life itself; however, we have no reason to lose our faith in Jesus. When our relationship with Jesus is simply rooted in what He did for us on the Cross, then we will realize that all the disappointments in life are not a reflection of Jesus walking away from us. If you lose faith in people that doesn’t mean you need to lose faith in Jesus.
I feel so passionate about making prayer something we need to do right now. One way that I practically pray is to the use the method I created called the 7×3 method ( I have a free 7×3 printable available for download at the end of this post!). This method includes writing seven statements down in three different categories. I also tend to keep a journal nearby, and if I have something pressing on my heart I go talk to God through writing in my journal.
Whatever you do, please, just pray now. Take what is pressing on your heart and take it to our heavenly Father and realize what a blessing it is to never have to worry about anything, and how special it is to be able to pray about everything! (Philippians 4:6-7)
P.S. My Free Gift for you! My free gift to you today is the 7×3 printable which includes a method I created in order to help me pray and have a productive quiet time with The Lord. This free printable is actually something I sent out to my newsletter subscribers over at Bible Study for Her, so if you would like to have quiet time or Bible Study printables like the 7×3 printable sent to your inbox on a regular basis, then feel free to subscribe to the newsletter here.
Click here to download your free printable: 7x3 Quiet Time Method
What are some practical ways you pray on a regular basis?