Why Am I Scared to Pray Boldly?
Lysa TerKeurst

"…the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective." James 5:16b (NIV)

I have to admit I'm sometimes scared to pray boldly.

It's not at all that I don't believe God can do anything. I absolutely do. I'm a wild about Jesus girl. Wild in my willingness. Wild in my obedience. Wild in my adventures with God.

After all, I think Jesus would rather reign in a wild stallion than kick a dead mule any day of the week.

So, my hesitation isn't rooted in any kind of doubt about God.

It's more rooted in a doubt about myself and my ability to absolutely discern the will of God. The reality is sometimes God chooses not to do things. And if His will is no- while I am boldly praying for a yes- it makes me feel out of step with God.

Can you relate?

I so desperately want to stay in the will of God that I find myself praying with clauses sometimes. Like, "God please heal my friend but if it's Your will to take her, I will trust You." I wonder why I don't just boldly pray, "God, please heal my friend." And then stand confidently that my prayers were not in vain no matter what the outcome.

The reality is, my prayers don't change God. But, I am convinced prayer changes me. Praying boldly boots me out of that stale place of religious habit into authentic connection with God Himself.

Prayer opens my spiritual eyes to see things I can't see on my own. And I am convinced prayer matters. Prayers are powerful and effective if prayed from the position of a righteous heart (James 5:16).

So, prayer does make a difference - a life-changing, mind-blowing, earth-rattling difference. We don't need to know how. We don't need to know when. We just need to kneel confidently and know the tremors of a simple Jesus girl's prayers, extend far wide and far high and far deep.

Letting that absolute truth slosh over into my soul, snuffs out the flickers of hesitation. It bends my stiff knees. And it ignites a fresh, bold and even more wild fire within. Not bold as in bossy and demanding. But bold as in I love my Jesus with all my heart so why would I offer anything less than an ignited prayer life.

"But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. And when you pray, do not keep babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your father knows what you need before you ask him," (Jesus speaking in Matthew 6:6-8, NIV).

What do you need to pray boldly about today? Don't delay - go ahead and ask. And ask again. Not so that we can cause God to move, rather so that we can position our souls to be able to see our sweet Jesus move in any which way He pleases.

Dear Lord, I believe that You are the giver of life and Lord over all things. Thank You for providing me with exactly what I need, even though it isn't always what I may want. I trust that You have my best interest in mind today. I desire to have an authentic connection with You right now. I need You Lord. Show me the way. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

Related Resources:
Lysa will be speaking in over 40 cities this year and she’d love to meet you! To check for a city near you, click here.

Visit Lysa’s blog for a bold prayer every mom should pray over her children.

If this devotion resonated with you, you’ll want to read Becoming More Than a Good Bible Study Girl by Lysa TerKeurst

Becoming More Than a Good Bible Study Girl DVD set

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Application Steps:
Write down three bold prayers you would like to pray today. Pray them again tomorrow. And again the next day. Pray them for the next month even. And know with full assurance that the tremors of your prayers will extend far wide and far high and far deep. Pray and wait for God to respond.

How have I been praying lately? In boldness or in timidity? Why?

Do I believe that my prayers matter?

How can I position my soul today to be able to see Jesus move in any way He pleases?

Power Verses:
2 Kings 19:19, "Now, O Lord our God, deliver us from his hand, so that all kingdoms on earth may know that you alone, O Lord, are God." (NIV)

Matthew 15:25, "The woman came and knelt before him. 'Lord, help me!' she said."
Luke 17:5, "The apostles said to the Lord, 'Increase our faith!'"

© 2010 by Lysa TerKeurst. All rights reserved.

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow Lysa! Thanks so much for this devotion! I have often prayed the very same type of prayer.."Lord, do this please but if it's not your will, I trust you!!" I finally started praying that God's will be done in all things and that he will give me the grace to accept it, whatever it may be... Sometimes, he allows things to happen that I didn't want to happen.. For instance.. My son applied to be a corrections officer at a local prison.. I did NOT like that idea at all.. I began to pray that God's will be done.. well, my son got the job.. and I am still having a hard time adjusting to it. I want him to be in God's will always, but he is an individual, and he needs to find God on his own for his own souls sake.. but I am a praying Mama.. and God knows I won't quit praying for my children/stepchildren... So, now I am asking God to give me the strength and grace to accept every situation that arises in my life... and my children's lives... For my son, who knows what God has in store.. perhaps, he will become involved in witnessing to someone there... See the need for a prison ministry, I am sooo trusting God each and every day for his safety..

Blogger pro356mom said...

Thank you for that beautiful connection of prayer to a sincere relationship with our Heavenly Father. "Praying boldly boots me out of that stale place of religious habit into authentic connection with God Himself.” I so want to be in relationship with Him, and what better way than to talk to Him as a friend, parent, trusted advisor… It is so easy to fall into religious ritual, doing things because they are the “right” thing to do. When I am actively communicating with God my actions are out of love and joy in doing them for and with a dear friend. Thank you for this very important reminder!

Anonymous michelle said...

Thank you Lysa for your beautiful reminder to pray boldly. My son is serving in Aghanistan and I always caviat my prayers with "if it be thy will". I have been afraid to beg the Lord for my son's safety. Now I know he expects me to pray with honesty and truthfullness and not wimp out in the end. You have given me peace and conviction in my prayers about my son and his fellow warriors. Thank you so much. Love, michelle

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I used to think that praying God's will be done at the end was sort of a cop out- just in case your prayers were not answered the way that you had prayed. Last April my brother had a stroke and the doctors performed surgery. During this time I had all of these up and down emotions going on. I finally went to the chapel and just knelt down with a Bible and I said "Lord, I can't take this up and down emotional thing going on. Please lead me to a word that will give me peace and calmness in my soul." I read scripture after scripture. Finally, He lead me to the Lord's prayer- when I read -thy will be done- a perfect peace come over me. I would like to tell you that my brother lived and everthing turned out the way I wanted it to that day. But my brother went home to be with the Lord that day. It was and still is very hard. But I know that it was His will for my brother that day.
When I struggle with the whys- I allow myself to go back to that day in the chapel.

Blogger Irma@CosasBellas said...

Thank you so much Lysa, it was exactly what I needed to hear.
Yes, I can relate to you completely and I will fervently pray that He teaches me to pray boldly, not be wishy washy in my prayers, and stop adding those "but"s in there.

Blessings, Irma

Blogger Nancy said...

Thanks so much! I needed this today. This is EXACTLY where I am right now.

Blogger Edwina said...

I think you've been spying on me! I want so badly to do the will of God and am afraid that I will miss him, that sometimes I won't pray at all about a situation, or a decision I need to make. That's crazy because I'm missing out on what God has for me. So, I will TODAY, begin to pray with boldness and move forward in faith.

Thank you for a great post!

Edwina Cowgill

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lysa thank you so much for this word. It was exactly what the Lord wanted me to hear. I felt so alone and out of step with God today, even though I know he will never leave me. I've lost my home, my husband his job and the list goes on but this devotion encouraged me to continue praying even when it seems like the Lord is silent. God Bless you!

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