Courage To Pray Bold Prayers
Do you wonder how some people can pray such bold prayers to God?
“I give everything I have to you, just tell me what you want me to do God.”
“I give everything I AM to you Father, change everything about me that doesn’t please you.”
“I will go wherever you send me Lord.”
“I will give whatever you ask, and forgive whoever you ask Jesus.”
“Show me where I have been wrong in this situation.” (Eeeesh, this one is especially hard).
Do these prayers scare you? Can you even imagine yourself praying them?
Have you ever prayed anything so bold? Do you desire to be more bold in your prayer life?
I, too, used to be afraid of my prayer closet. Let me share a story with you……
When I was younger, I would go to church and hear these awesome, and sometimes crazy, testimonies. The church would have these guest speakers come in, missionaries from across the globe. They would tell their stories…. How they had been just like us (the audience), living their lives, working 9 to 5. Then, through some crazy chain of events or spiritual encounter, God would tell them to stop their lives, sell everything they had, and move to Africa!!!
(I don’t know why it always seems like it’s Africa, lol. But, of course, this is just one example).
These teachers, and their stories, were meant to convict and encourage the body of Christ to live more selflessly for God. But they didn’t encourage me at all. THEY ABOUT SCARED THE CHURCH-GIRL RIGHT OUT OF ME!
I didn’t want to move to Africa! (I didn’t want to leave the country for that matter). I didn’t want to leave my life and family behind. I didn’t want to sell my possessions. I didn’t want to spend my days living in a mud hut, eating bugs, and taking baths in a disease-ridden river. (This was the visual I had conjured up in my head).
My fear was…. “What if God asked ME to do something like that for Him? What would I do? Would I listen? Would I run away like Jonah in the bible? What if my future was full of doom and gloom? Would I be forced to make a decision between living a terrible earth life, or going to Hell for eternity?”
Because of these fears, I was VERY careful with the prayers I prayed. I didn’t want to give God FULL REIGN in my life, just enough. Because what if I told Him I was His, I would follow Him no matter what, that I would follow Him to the ends of the earth, that I would forsake mother and brother…… And then He actually asked me to do those things? I was not about to make false promises to God!
Today, I pray bold prayers. AND IN THIS BLOG POST I WANT TO SHARE:
4 TRUTHS THAT HELPED ME OVERCOME THE FEAR OF PRAYING BOLD PRAYERS
I realized over time that these fears were rooted in lies that I believed about God’s character. And when I saw the truth about God’s character, those lies and fears began to fade away. Sometimes I can hardly remember all the ways I used to think, the fears I used to have. And I hope that you will be able to say that same thing in the not so far future.
TRUTH #1: God gives you the desires of your heart
I used to be taught that the biggest areas of resistance or dislike in my life, were the areas that God was going to call me to serve or minister. Maybe as some sort of lesson, or maybe even penance for being resistant or prideful.
For example, I have never been a lover of children or babysitting. And people would tell me that OBVIOUSLY I needed to serve in the Children’s Church ministry to force myself to do what I didn’t like, or what didn’t come naturally to me. They would say that was “a sign” that that was an area I needed to serve in.
So naturally, I interpreted this as: “God wants to correct me and punish me for having dislikes and weaknesses. He doesn’t care if I’m happy; He wants me to serve, die to self, and do what makes me miserable.” Sound familiar?
Wow, what a TERRIBLE and false view of God’s character.
(Side note: Don’t get me wrong. There are times and situations where I felt led to do something outside of my comfort zone, or something I was not necessarily looking forward to. But this was only for a season, to teach and grow me for the future and my actual calling. And I felt the Holy Spirit leading and pulling you. NOT PEOPLE pushing and guilting you. There is a very big difference.)
Because of this teaching, I used to think I was doomed to have tons of children, be a stay-at-home mom for half my life, and serve in Children’s Church. (Obviously these things can be huge blessings from the Lord. I am not speaking down on them. I am simple saying they were not the desires of MY heart).
On the flip side….. This false teaching gave me the impression that the desires that I DID have in my heart were probably selfish, worldly, and ultimately wrong. They were things of the flesh that should be denied and resisted. (Man, I am cringing just writing this!)
Just writing these things down shocks the crap out of me that I believed such things. That such things are taught in the body of Christ, or at best…. insinuated. Especially because the Word of God teaches so much on the contrary!
Here are a few verses that show God’s true heart and intent toward us:
John 10:10b – “I have come that they may have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.”
Psalm 37:4 – “Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.”
Proverbs 10:24 – “What the wicked dreads will come upon him, but the desire of the righteous will be granted.”
Jeremiah 29:11 – “For I know the thoughts that I think towards you,” says the Lord. “Thoughts of peace, not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
These are a few, not to mention the whole story of the Bible itself. How God loved us so much that he went through everything He did, planned down to the last detail, to make sure that we would have the opportunity to be saved and know Him and His love truly and freely.
If you went about all that trouble for someone, and then even died a terrible death for them, would it then make sense for your intentions to be to make them miserable slaves who don’t enjoy their lives? No! That makes no sense!
Believing that God wanted to give me the Godly desires of my heart helped me pray bold prayers.
TRUTH #2: God’s plans for you are good
God has your best intentions at heart. God knows the thoughts He has for your future, to give you a good future and hope.
Jeremiah 29:11 says: “For I know the thoughts that I think towards you,” says the Lord. “Thoughts of peace, not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
“The thought He thinks towards me?” you might me wondering.
If you think thoughts towards a person, those are your INTENTIONS towards that person. This is just an old English way of saying that God has good INTENTIONS for you. Intentions for peace, a future, AND A HOPE.
How could you have peace and hope about your future if you are expecting to always be doing things that you hate?! Or at best, that you don’t enjoy?
Once again, the whole Bible is a story about how God planned and went about executing a way for His children to be free from the power of sin, guilt, and condemnation. So we could walk in newness of life, with hope, peace, and the very power of God living in us through the Holy Spirit! Why would he do all of that if he didn’t have such a bright future in store for you?
When I started believing that the plans that God had for me were good, better than I could ever imagine for myself….. it changed my perspective of God’s character. It changed my perspective of his intentions towards me. And it caused me to be able to trust Him. So I knew no matter what He called me to, or asked me to do in the future….. it would be good. Which caused me to look forward to my future and have hope for it. Just like the verse says.
Instead of being afraid…. “What is the Lord going to ask me to do?”….
I started to get excited! “What does God have FOR me?! What is he going to equip me for?
Knowing that God’s plan for my future is only good helped me pray bold prayers.
TRUTH #3: Choosing to disobey will not send you to hell. Grace changes everything.
Yes I did just say that.
One thing that will greatly hinder our walk and relationship with God is condemnation.
By definition, CONDEMNATION MEANS TO FEEL VERY STRONG DISAPPROVAL, PUNISHMENT, OR EVEN DAMNATION FROM GOD.
If you are feeling any of those ways, and you think those feelings are coming from God, then THAT IS A LIE FROM HELL. (Feeling condenmed and feeling CONVICTED are two very different things).
Romans 8:1 says: “There is now NO CONDEMNATION to those which are in Christ Jesus, who walk after the Spirit. For the law of the spirit of life has made me free from the law of sin and death.”
If you ARE feeling condemned, it is because of a wrong perspective. WRONG BELIEVING about God’s character, and your relationship to Him in the spiritual realm.
I used to think that if I didn’t do everything perfectly, or do exactly what I was “supposed to do”, then I would go to hell. But that is not true my friends!
I could literally make a blog post, (or multiple), just on this one topic. But that is not the point of this post. So I will briefly explain….
The bible says that we are not justified to God by our works or deeds, but by faith.
The bible says that salvation is a FREE GIFT from Jesus, and His death on the cross. NOT a reward that is earned. We just have to believe and receive.
When Jesus died on the cross and took our punishment for our sins, that was GRACE. And grace really did change everything! It changed every way that we now relate to God, and reveals huge aspects if His TRUE character and intentions towards us.
So…. If there is nothing you can do to EARN your salvation, then how could there be something you can do to lose it? It was given to you freely the moment you believed and received it BY FAITH.
This truth took me some years to truly believe in my heart. I was really caught up in legalism and a works mentality. AKA: working my way to heaven. But once I got rid of that lie from satan, which resulted in me getting rid of the condemnation…. I as able to accept the TRUTH.
The truth being that I still had free will to make my own choices. And even if I made mistakes, or didn’t listen to God perfectly, that did not mean I was not going to go to hell. Because that didn’t take away my faith in my salvation, or the Holy Spirit living inside of me. My sin isn’t more powerful than the blood of Jesus, His blood still covers me even when I mess up.
This truth freed me to pray bold prayers. I did not have to be so afraid of what God would ask me to do for Him, because I felt like I would have a choice in the matter, not be forced into compliance. I no longer had to be afraid of making false promises to God. (Which is a funny thing, because once you know you don’t HAVE to do something for God….. it actually makes you WANT to do it).
TRUTH #4: You don’t have to be ready RIGHT NOW to do everything God has for you
There is one thing that God has been hammering into my head for years now. And that is TO TAKE EACH DAY ONE DAY AT A TIME. (Hence the reason that it is sort of my blog slogan). I don’t always do it well, but I know that He has been telling me on repeat for the past few years now.
To add to that, I have learned that God gives you grace for each day and each season.
This is sweet, sweet news my friends! This means that you don’t have to be ready TODAY, for what God will ask of you TOMORROW. He knows what you are and are not ready for.
The more we seek God and grow in our relationship with Him, we are being transformed into his image by the Holy Spirit. 2 Corinthians 3:18 FOLLOW LINK
This gives me SO MUCH peace you guys. Knowing that God is growing me into the person He needs me to be. God knows that if He showed me all the things He has called me to right now, today….. I would probably have a panic attack and then run away and hide like Jonah, frozen by fear AND the over-contemplation of how the heck I would ever make all of it happen.
But He is a good God. He gives us things in bite-sized pieces, so we can chew on them a while and then be ready for the next bite.
The Bible says that God is faithful to finish the work He has started IN US during our time here on earth. Philippians 1:6 FOLLOW LINK
It also says that HE is the AUTHOR and PERFECTOR of our faith. Hebrews 12:2a FOLLOW LINK
So, if you put all of this together….. God is the one who gives you your faith…..then He’s the one who perfects it IN you. He is the one who finishes the good works and callings He has started in you from your day of conception. (AKA= desires).
He’s got this!!!
When I started believing these 4 truths, and having confidence in them, I was able to pray bold prayers. My whole view of God’s character had begun to shift.
I started to believe that God wanted to give me the DESIRES of my heart, and not the dreads of my heart.
I started to believe that God has good intentions for me and my future, not misery.
I started to believe in God’s grace, and wasn’t afraid of going to hell if I disobeyed or faltered.
I started to believe that God would give me enough grace each day to get through that day. I didn’t need to be worried about tomorrow, and be ready for everything in my future right now.
For me, I have been coming to find that God starts to puts small desires in my heart. He starts to whisper in my ear small ideas He has for me one day. He gets my mind and imagination going, so I can start visualizing these things happening in my life. And it grows slowly over time. By the time it comes for Him to actually ask me to DO anything about it, it’s not this out-of-the-blue thing. And I have a peace in my heart and knowing in my mind that this IS INDEED God. And I am ready for Him to lead me.
Don’t get me wrong though…. This doesn’t mean that I still am not nervous about the things He calls me to do. But it’s a different feeling than before. It’s not a dread. It’s an anxious excitement….
Like…..”I hope I don’t fall flat on my face….. but this is going to be fun! I can see where God is taking me!”
I hope these biblical truths have helped get you closer to praying bold prayers to God.
Because when I have prayed bold prayers, they sown a seed. And the harvest grows. And all the sudden it is time for a harvest and I get confused as to why?
“What seeds did I sow? When did I ask for this growth? Why is God taking me to the next level?”
And He whispers, “It’s because of the bold prayers you have prayed in the secrecy of your closet.”
Happy praying brothers and sisters in Christ
Until next time, take each day one day at a time.
Her Life In Season