All my life I have talked to God in prayer. Somehow, even while raised in a denomination based on written, formula prayers, I always knew that God loved me and felt I could just talk to Him and that He would hear me. I am ever grateful that about twenty years ago I read the book Intercessory Prayer by Dutch Sheets. It led me to a new understanding of how God partners with us in prayer, waiting to move and release what He has planned until our prayers have ascended to heaven. God doesn’t need our prayers; He simply chooses to use them as part of His plan.
About that same time, the Holy Spirit also led me to begin declaring Scripture back to God as a prayer. It tells us in Isaiah that His word will NOT return void,so He hears and responds to His Word.His Word has more power and authority than anything we could think up to say.
We sometimes say “All I can do is pray.” not realizing that praying is the most powerful thing we can do. Why do we often try to figure a situation out or solve a problem in our own strength without first praying about it? When we discern an issue in a person or in our church, most often it is not to criticize or fix but rather, we have had discernment so we can pray about it. I have known people called to be an intercessor who feel they don’t have much to offer, not realizing that God has called them to a holy partnering with Him.
I was reading a devotional today that struck a chord in my heart. It is titled “Prayer Fleece” in Draw the Circle by Mark Batterson. I could identify as I am living it in my journey as a writer. It states “As you press into God’s presence, new holy desires are birthed in your spirit. These ultimately become lifelong dreams if we nurture them in prayer.” I have watched this unfold with my desire to write and minister to women on finding their God-given identity, calling and worth. And although he goes on to caution about when and how to cast a prayer fleece, asking God for confirmation when we are uncertain, I have cast a fleece twice this past year.
As I regrouped from a low point of hope lost and lack of vision for the future, my heart was stirred to believe that God has a plan for good and that it was time to write the book that has been on my heart for years. The Proverbs 31 “She Speaks” conference came to my attention again and I felt I was to attend. But I also knew that my finances could not cover it. Like a light bulb of inspiration, I thought to ask my church if they could help provide. To my delight, my pastor approved the church paying my registration fee and also encouraged me greatly by saying “We are blessed to invest in you!”. My heart soared in gratitude to my pastor, my church and most of all to God who heard my prayer and provided an answer.
The conference was wonderful, very informative and it was such a treasure just to be in the atmosphere of the communion of 800 Christian women, all desiring to serve Him and help others through speaking and writing what He has shown us. Through She Speaks I met Anna, who told me about an opening for a mother of grown children for the Christian TV station Mom Talk show. I applied and auditioned. I had never had a goal of being on TV but saw this an exciting new opportunity. Feeling nervous, I just placed it in God’s hands and prayed that He give me peace and if this was part of His plan for my life, that He give me favor. And I was chosen for the part.
I would encourage you to walk closely with God and talk to Him in prayer, believing that He loves you, hears you and will answer in the way He knows is best. Trust in His promise in Psalm 37 that as we “Delight in the Lord …. He will give you the desires of your heart. Commit your way to the Lord, Trust also in Him, and He will do it”. This truly one of the verses that guides my life and I know it is true.