Soul Food

Are You Praying With Hope or Wishful Thoughts?

Have you ever asked God for something but didn’t believe or have hope He would make it happen? Maybe it was while sitting in the bathroom getting ready to take a pregnancy test or perhaps a more serious situation in which you were pleading desperate prayers for a loved one while in the waiting room of a hospital? No matter the scale of seriousness or reason for your prayers, have you ever felt as though they never left the four walls of the room? It was as if they would just hit the wall, bounce back and smack you in the forehead.  I know I have…many times.

There are many reasons I have been told as to why our prayers seem to be unfruitful or go unanswered, but I believe one of the reasons they might not get answered is because we doubt in our hearts, and we lack hope that God whom we say we trust, will even come through for us.

You might be reading this today and saying, “But wait! I do have hope when I pray!” However, I have to ask what kind of hope it is? For instance, when you pray, do you feel like you are standing at the “wishing well” just tossing up your prayers “hoping” God might answer, He might hear, or He might come to your rescue? Or are you fully confident and waiting with a positive expectation that God will hear you and answer? If it is the second, then this type of prayer is filled with the biblical definition of hope, and it doesn’t include thoughts afterward of “might,” “maybe,” or “will He or won’t He.” And this is the type of prayer that causes God to bend down to listen.

So let me ask again, what kind of hope do you have when you pray? Still unsure? This entertaining and less than two-minute skit should help you decide if your hope is wishy-washy or that of confidence. Please take a peek; it’s worth it.

Did you watch it? Wasn’t it such an eye-opener? It was for me. The first time I watched it, I had to ask myself this: Am I the person who, after praying, thinks of and points out all the reasons why the level of expectation shouldn’t be high, or am I the one expecting a downpour of blessings? How about you? Which person are you most of the time? I can venture to say that for most of us if we are honest, we spend much of our prayer time standing at the “wishing well.” We ask God to heal our bodies but then doubt He will. We beg for Him to answer our prayers to conceive but think in the back of our minds why He won’t come through for us. We ask Him for something, anything, but come up with every reason to doubt that He would or could. Just like each coin, we toss-up each prayer with the kind of hope that God might or might not and then stand back and wonder why we are disappointed.

But is praying with hope in God or expectancy that He will answer that important? Isn’t it better not to get your hopes up at all so that if your prayers aren’t answered, there won’t be as much disappointment? Let’s take a look…

James 1:6-7 tells us the importance of having a confident and positive expectation that good will happen when we pray.

“But when you ask, be sure that you really expect Him to answer, for a doubtful mind is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. People like that should not expect to receive anything from the Lord.”

If we want to receive anything from the Lord, we need to get our hopes up…we need to raise our expectation level! Each morning I wake up saying prayers filled with expectation. Prayers such as, “God, I am expecting to be amazed, and in awe of all of the great things You will do today.”

I can’t, nor could I ever guarantee, that if you expect a certain answer each time you pray that you will always get what you ask, especially in the time frame that you want it. But I can guarantee you this: if you stop standing at the wishing well when you pray, and start praying faith-filled prayers laced with true biblical hope, then your percentage of answered prayers will increase dramatically. I have seen it in my life and the lives of many others.

So, back to my original question, what kind of hope do you have when you pray? Are you praying with a joyful and confident expectation? Or do you end your prayers with thoughts of “Well, God might answer…God might do this for me…If I expect little, then I won’t get hurt…”?

Be expectant! God loves to answer hopeful, expectant, and faith fulled prayers.

Friends, what situation in your life are you praying for God to change? Whether it is conceiving a child, healing in your body or of a broken heart, a financial breakthrough, restoration of your marriage, or a new job, I encourage you to pray in faith and wait in true biblical hope because “The Lord is good to those who hopefully and expectantly wait for Him.” (Lamentations 3:25 AMP).

With Love

I would love to connect with you personally, so if you liked this post, pass it on, then come find Waiting for Baby Bird on the public Facebook page or join me on Instagram @waitingforbabybird. I can’t wait to “meet” you!

If you are looking for a faith-based infertility community of other women who “get it,” then head over to the *PRIVATE* Waiting for Baby Bird Support group for hope + encouragement. There you will find opportunities to ask for prayer, watch *LIVE* encouragement videos from me, author of “Waiting for Baby Bird,” as well as be able to share your heart with others on the same path, enter into exclusive giveaways, and so much more! So what are you waiting for? Find us here!


32 thoughts on “Are You Praying With Hope or Wishful Thoughts?”

  1. I wish you’d write a book, Elisha. Your posts are awesome and so well written! I could use them in book format to read on a day to day basis. And I hope I get a signed copy when you’re done 😉

    Seriously though – your posts amaze me every time. It’s like you’re reading my mind when you decide what to write about. You’re so inspirational!

    1. I have to second this! You should write a book!! Women know the how of TTC, but what is really lacking is how do we cope emotionally through the struggle. Your posts are amazing for that and you truly do spread the word of God in a simple yet comforting way.

      I have recently discovered your site and find your words really give me guidance. You are helping me to rediscover my faith, but also to change how I think.

      I love this post and it truly came for me at the right time. I do need to be more confident! I now better understand the comment you left for me on my blog. 🙂

      1. Awe thank you for your sweet words! I think writing a book would be EXTREMELY stressful! lol!! Yes be confident!! He is a prayer answering God to those who have the hope and faith in Him 😉 Hugs!

  2. Great encouragement, Elisha! I remember Beth Moore saying something similar in Believing God – how, when we pray believing, we will see an increased answer to prayer! That is exciting! This definitely doesn’t come naturally to me, but challenge accepted!

    1. I don’t think it comes naturally do anyone :/ It takes discipline but I believe the more we practice it, the easier it will become. It’s kind of like growing a plant. At first we have to be really diligent in keeping the weeds out, watering several times a day and fertilizing but once they get bigger and more mature, the less work it becomes. love ya!

      1. I totally disagree. This is more than book worthy. I know I would purchase because it seems as if God speaks to you. That post was an eye opener for me. You are so right, when I pray it was like tossing a coin in the wishing well. I have protected my heart by having that very thought “if it happen good if not than I won’t be to hurt”. I dislike being disappointed especially by my Father who promise me something and when it doesn’t come to pass, it hurts and I don’t have an option to hate God because of it. Ok I’m babbling on. All to say that you should right a book. The Lord will lead you.

  3. Such a beautiful post. I love your writing and how you inspire faith and hope. Your talents for relaying God’s words is truly something special. Thank you friend!

  4. Love this! Connor and I noticed that we had been standing at the wishing well for far too long. The month we decided to stop tossing our pennies in but instead take the full body plung of expectation, our needs were met and far exceeded! God is Good and our level of expectation should be high. Love this, love you!!! Thank you for sharing a topic we are both so passionate about!

    1. I still giggle throughout my day when I think about your awesome testimony and how many lives will be touched through it! God is so good and so faithful! I cringe when I hear people say, “Well, I don’t want to get my hopes up!” I believe this is true if you are putting you hope in anything other than God…but if your hope is in Him and Him alone, then let HOPE ARISE!!!

      Love you!

  5. Isaiah 44:21 is what I am led to leave you with today:
    “Remember these things, O Jacob,
    And Israel, for you are My servant;
    I have formed you, you are My servant,
    O Israel, you will not be forgotten by Me.”
    We are serving the Lord; We are praying with hope in Him; We are standing on His Promises. He will not forget us.

  6. I don’t like how I found your blog with the death of my son due to a cord accident, but you have been blessing to me. I wait for your posts each day because they give me hope and then keep pointing me in the direction that I know I need to be in. You always express yourself in such a way that makes sense and helps me get closer to God, Thank you so much! I pray for you often, that God hears your cry for a ‘baby bird’.

    1. My heart goes out to you! Especially tomorrow!! If you ever need anything just email me at
      God is always good and will stop at nothing to restore to you that which the devil has stolen. He loves you!! Xoxo

  7. God has given you such a gift! You’re ability to express emotion and relate it all back to the Glory of God is amazing. Thank you for continuing to be such an inspiration and positive light!

    1. awe thank you for your sweet words! I pray that God gets the glory for every.single.word. that I type. xoxo

  8. I guess my struggle with this is that God doesn’t promise to give us everything we want… If we don’t have the promise of a child (and I know you and your husband do) than it doesn’t make sense to hold Him to something He hasn’t promised.

    1. I understand exactly what you are saying. But on the flip side doesn’t He promise to give us the desires of our hearts? And if the desire for motherhood is from him then can’t we hold him to his promise? For me, i believe so. It was his idea from the beginning of creation for us to multiply and he is the same yesterday, today, and forever. Many might disagree, even you because everyone is different and has different beliefs…these are just mine. ❤❤

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