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Praying with Expectation

Read This: “Now to him who by the power that is working within us is able to do far beyond all that we ask or think” (Ephesians 3:20)

Think: As Christians we know prayer is an important part of our relationship with God. After all, how can we have a relationship with someone we don’t talk to? And while we believe in the importance of prayer, at times we may feel like we’re just going through the motions, talking to ourselves, and checking things off the list of people or things we need to pray for.

When prayer seems meaningless we’ve fallen for one of Satan’s best tricks. We’ve muddled it down to an act of obedience instead of taking advantage of the true power of prayer. James 5:16-18 says, “The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. Elijah was a man just like us. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain and the earth produced its crops.” When we are in the will of God, our prayers mean something—sometimes everything. We are talking to our Father, the God of the universe, who listens to us and responds.

In Matthew 21:22 Jesus said, “And whatever you ask in prayer, if you believe, you will receive.” Do we still believe in miracles? Really? What would it be like to pray with great expectations? Maybe we’d look a little crazy, standing outside with an umbrella on a hot sunny day. Certainly it would breathe new life into our prayers and our walk with God. Maybe “praying without ceasing” wouldn’t be such a daunting task because there’s new found joy in the power of talking to our Holy God.

Ask: Do you enjoy time in prayer? Do you expect God to answer your prayers? Why do you think God sometimes chooses to answer “no” or “not yet”?

Pray: Before jumping in to prayer, spend some time thinking about who God is and all he has done—from the creation of the universe to the specific ways he’s cared for you. Praise him and make your requests believing he is able to do those things and more.