Intercession How to Pray so God says yes
Is it possible to pray in such a way that you know God’s answer will be yea and amen? I believe it is. C.S. Lewis said, “Prayer doesn’t change God. It changes me.” Will you allow God to change your prayers?
For His own reasons, God has chosen to partner with us in prayer. But He is not a vending machine that automatically dispenses the things we ask for in prayer. He is sovereign. When He decides to do something, He moves His people to pray.
What would you do if God asked you to go to the foreign mission field? He asked me to do that nearly twenty years ago. I was so sure of His call that I left everything behind and moved to Russia. There was no doubt in my mind that He had a call on my life for a season of serving overseas.
It was easy to trust Him for the things I
“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.” (1 John 5:14 NIV)
needed during that time, because I knew I was doing His will. When I returned after seven years, I wasn’t so clear about what my mission at home was. I had to learn to hear Him all over again.
“If you remain in Me and My words remain in you [that is, if we are vitally united and My message lives in your heart], ask whatever you wish and it will be done for you. My Father is glorified and honored by this, when you bear much fruit, and prove yourselves to be My [true] disciples (John 15:7-8 AMP).”
It was easy to trust God for the big things. Living totally dependent upon God in Russia was easy compared to living in the States where I had for so many years depended on myself for the little things. But God was asking me to trust Him even in the little things.
I needed to learn how to pray according to His will when things didn’t seem quite so clear. That’s when my prayer life changed—dramatically.
I learned to seek first to glorify God in how I prayed. I began to ask Him what was on His heart and how He wanted me to pray.
In every situation, God has a plan. He wants us to pray according to that plan, and the only way we know what to pray is to ask Him.
So what kind of prayers glorify God and produce fruit in our lives?
God’s glorious light shows us exactly how we should pray. His light does four things:
1. It dispels darkness. Praying according to what is true glorifies God
2. It finds lost things. We know that the ultimate fruit is seeing others come into the kingdom. Prayer for the salvation of others is always according to His will.
3. It cleanses. God’s will for each person is to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
4. It heals. God wants us to be healed, physically, emotionally, mentally, and most of all, spiritually. And while it is not always clear why we don’t always see that healing physically manifest, it is still according to His will to ask for it. (See James 5:16.)
“Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. (Hebrews 7:25 NIV).”
Prayers that focus on what God says is important rather than what we think is important align with His will.
If the Spirit lays something on your heart, you can be 100% sure that He will hear you. And we can know that it is the Holy Spirit who moves us to prayer because what we feel led to pray for will line up with God’s word.
Our relationship with God is intimate. We have His Holy Spirit resident within us, and we have Jesus, the Word of God, to guide our way.
While we are petitioning God according to His will, Jesus is petitioning Him on our behalf. That’s a combination that cannot lose.
That’s how we make intercession.