Prayer is not a means of getting God to meet our desires and demands. What I say to God is not as important as what He says to me. A great part of prayer is hearing Him. It’s a lot easier to talk about prayer than it is to actually pray. There are a couple of things that can ensure that our prayers will find His answers.
1. It’s According To God’s Will
1 John 5:14-15 (NKJV)
14 Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us. 15 And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him.
There is nothing in our lives that we can’t bring to God. Many times, we make our prayer life more about us and what we are doing or what we have done than having confidence that we can go to God. We need to have the confidence to know that even if we did something that we had no business doing—we can still go to God. Our prayer lives are not contingent on our behavior. Our confidence is not in our prayer—it’s in Him. There are some things that we are wasting our time in prayer because it’s not His will. Prayer that find God’s answers are according to His will.
There are people at home mad at God because He did not do something that they asked for. You can’t erase the sovereignty of God from prayer. God sees further—knows everything and everything that we ask for may not come to pass the way we asked for it, but it doesn’tchange the fact that He hears. It’s got to be according to God’s will. The question is—Is it His will? Many times, we don’t want to ask Him what His will is because we want—what we want.
Ephesians 3:12 (NKJV)
12 in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him.
2. It’s Going To Be Based Upon God’s Character, Ways, and Words
John 15:5-7 (NKJV)
5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. 7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you[a] will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.
When you dwell with someone over a period of time, you come know who they are (character), how they act (ways), what they really mean (words). Prayer is intricately tied toGod’s character. When you dwell with someone long enough you know what you can ask for.
3. It’ll Be From A Clean Heart
James 5:16 (NKJV)
16 [a] Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, [b] fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.
Confess means to acknowledge or agree fully. It has to be from a clean heart. You and I will never get our prayers to God until we deal with our own hearts. Sometimes our prayers seem like they are hitting a brick wall. We have issues that we have not resolved. It’s got to be from a clean heart—a place of wholeness. A clean heart is access in prayer. We must ask God to clean our hearts because it will be a hindrance to our prayers. Sometimes the confession might be to someone who can give you some counsel.
4. It Will Be Prayed In Faith
5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. 6 But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; 8 he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.
Your prayer life and my prayer life have nothing to do with our bringing it to pass. Wavering means to hesitate. The least little bit of something will move us off of believing God. A double- minded person is driven in two different ways. We’ve got to pray in faith.
5. It Will Be Asked In Jesus’ Name
John 14:12-14 (NKJV)
12 “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. 13 And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. 14 If you [a]ask anything in My name, I will do it.
Not just the letters but asking anything using Jesus’ authority. Using His character. The context is: He is talking about the work that He’s done. Many times, we take scripture and try to cherry pick and overlay them on our situation. He says, “Whatever you ask in my authority,”which is why when we pray, we say in Jesus’ name. He says, “You have no authority in heaven. You have no authority in this realm; however, you have an advocate in that realm so when you need something from that realm, you make a call and don’t use your name—use My name. If you use My name—you’ll get access to what you need.” The authority is in Jesus’name.