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 of 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 have doubt in our hearts, and we lack hope that the God we say we trust, will even come through for us.
But wait! What?! I do have hope when I pray! Okay…What kind of hope do you have when you pray?
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 when you pray, are fully confident and waiting with a positive expectation that God hears you and will answer? This type of prayer is filled with the biblical definition of hope and it doesn’t include thoughts afterwards of “might“, “maybe”, or “will He or won’t He”.
The definition of hope in the bible is to have a joyful, confident and positive expectation of good
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 below should help you decide if your hope is “wishy washy” or that of confidence…
Did you watch the video? Are you the person who after praying thinks of and points out all the reasons why the level of expectation shouldn’t be high or are you the one expecting a down pour of blessings? I can venture to say that for most of us, if we are COMPLETELY 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 and plead 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 to just not get your hopes up at all so that if your prayers aren’t answered their 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.”
YIKES! It seems as though if we want to receive anything from the Lord, than 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 guarantee that if you expect a certain answer each time you pray that you will always get what you ask of Him in the time frame that you want it. But I can guarantee you this, if you stop standing at the “wishing well” and are saying prayers filled with faith and with a confident and positive expectation (with hope), then your percentage of answered prayers will increase dramatically. I have seen it in my life and in the lives of many others.
So back to my original question, what kind of hope do you have when you pray? After you say your prayers, are you waiting with a joyful and confident expectation that at any moment God will turn your situation around for the good? 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!
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 wait in true biblical hope because “The Lord is good to those who hopefully and expectantly wait for Him.” (Lamentations 3:25 AMP).
*I do want to emphasize that not only must we have biblical hope that God will answer, and be willing to wait for His answer in His timing. Always be persistent in prayer just like Romans 12:12 points out.*
“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction and faithful in prayer.” ~Romans 12:12
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