Praying With Confidence


Praying With Confidence
Renee Swope

“This is the confidence which we
have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.” 1
John 5:14 (NAS)

I used to be hesitant to pray and found myself stumbling
over my words when talking to God. I especially didn’t know how to pray when
struggling with uncertainty and doubts.

Desperately wanting to say the
right things, I believed if I prayed the right way God would listen and answer
my prayers the way I wanted Him to.

It took me a while, but I eventually
got up the courage to talk with a friend about my fears and struggles. She
shared how she had struggled with the same things. She also explained how, over
time, she had discovered that prayer isn’t about saying or asking the right
things; it’s about building a relationship with God by talking to
Him.

She also showed me how to take verses from the Bible and turn them
into powerful prayers. Using God’s Word as a guide gave me a new sense of
confidence and direction when I didn’t know what to say.

One day I was
reading 1 John 5:14, and noticed it says we can pray with certainty when we ask
God for what is already part of His will: “This is the confidence which we have
before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears
us.”

Praying Scriptures increased my confidence over time, knowing that I
was praying God’s will when I prayed God’s Word.

Wanting my prayers to be
filled with power and my heart to be infused with faith, I now look for
Scriptures about God’s will and God’s ways. One is Hebrews 4:12 where God
teaches us His Word is “alive and active.” Praying that truth, I ask God to make
His Word come alive in a situation and become active in the person’s life I am
praying for, including my own.

Oftentimes when I pray now, I’ll remember
verses in the Bible that apply. For instance, when it feels like my plans are
spinning out of control, Jeremiah 29:11 will come to mind. On those days, I’ll
pray:

Lord, You know the plans You have for me, plans to prosper me and
not to harm me, plans to give me a future and a hope. You say that if I come to
You and pray, You will listen and will lead me. So, today I surrender my plans
for Your plans. Please guide my decisions and thoughts to match Yours so I can
experience hope and not harm. Even though things aren’t going so great today, I
trust the plans You have for me.”

God isn’t looking for the perfect
combination of words, and there’s no formula to get it right. Now that the
pressure to say the right things is gone, praying has become one of my favorite
things to do—whether alone or with a friend.

Sometimes I just sit still
and let God whisper His promises into my thoughts and then I ask for their
fulfillment in my prayers.

Lord, I’m so glad I don’t have to say that
right thing to get Your attention. Thank You for Your Spirit that lives in me
and leads me—in my daily activities and even in my prayers. Please show me
verses You want me to pray so I can see Your Word come alive in my circumstances
and become active in my life. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

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