"Why Your Simple Prayer Petitions Are Powerful"
What if there was one type of prayer that demonstrated the Fatherhood of God more than any other?
And what if that same type of prayer was being undervalued by us
today, due to its seemingly humble approach?
An Encounter That Changed My Life
Many years ago, I had a life-defining encounter with God. It took place in a moment; I simply asked Him to teach
me about faith. Immediately, in my mind's eye, I saw a small boy standing in front of a shop window. It was a candy store (or lolly shop), and there were rows upon rows of good things on the shelves.
As I looked at this child,
I could see his great desire for what was in the window. Somehow I knew that in his back pocket, he had one small coin. Oh, how I felt the strength of his desire and the limitation of that coin!
Then suddenly, the Holy Spirit
spoke to me, saying, "Same boy. The same amount of money in his pocket, but his father owns the store.”
A Powerful Change of Perspective
Immediately, my perspective changed. It
was no longer about how much pocket money the child had, or how much he had earned. Now, it was all about his relationship with his father. He could go behind the counter, get up on his daddy's lap and ask for whatever his heart desired.
You see, when you bring the Father into the picture, everything changes. This is the greatness and the simplicity of the Gospel, and it is also true of prayer.
What We Can Ask God For
a popular viewpoint, humble, request-type prayers are not compatible with our spiritual identity, position and authority – or are they?
I do agree that asking for what God has already given is unnecessary! And this is
why we need to know what the Bible says. For we can receive what God has already given to us by faith, with thanksgiving. But we can also petition God, asking that He would bring about His plans, and for the resources that are needed for His will to be done
(Matt. 6:10). We can ask Him about all of the things that concern us, and He delights to listen!
Paul wrote, "Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests
be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus" (Phil. 4:6-7, NKJV).
8 Reasons Why a Prayer of Petition (Requesting in Prayer) Is Powerful
The foundational keys of prayer are simple; Jesus gave them to us, and they've never changed.
• Ask the Father (John 15:16)
• Ask in Jesus' name
with thanksgiving (Phil. 4:6-7 and point number six below)
Here are eight compelling reasons why a prayer of petition (requesting or "asking" in prayer) is powerful.
- Your Prayer
of Petition Is Biblical
By making simple requests in prayer, in Jesus' name, we are following the instruction of God's Word. There are numerous examples in the Old Testament, but let's jump straight to the Gospels.
Jesus linked our destiny with the great privilege of asking the Father anything in His name!
"You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that
whatever you ask the Father in My name He may give you." (John 15:16, NKJV)
In the original Greek, the verb "ask," here, can be translated to: "ask," "beg," "call for," "crave," "desire" and “require."
Paul spoke of the joy of making requests: "I thank my God upon every remembrance of you, always in every prayer of mine making request for you all with joy..." (Phil. 1:3-4, NKJV). He also mentioned making requests to God that he could visit the church
in Rome (Rom. 1:10).
So, if Jesus initiated petition, and the apostles of the New Testament practiced it, then let us also honor it as a gift.
2. Your Petition Can Be Prophetic (Expressing
Jesus made it clear that we can ask God for His will to be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven (Matt. 6:10). John wrote, "Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to
His will, He hears us. And if we know that He hears us, whatever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we have asked of Him."
(1 John 5:14-15, NKJV)
So, our petitions can be prophetic in nature, carrying with
them the very power of fulfillment. Knowing that God is good and faithful provides us with a lens to see through (Heb. 11:11). Thus, our prayers are emboldened with confidence!
These insights can be gained simply through studying
the Bible, hearing God's voice, our relationship with Him, prophetic words or the timely input of others.
3. Prayers of Petition Release the Resources of Heaven
Asking is powerful! Simply
by asking, Heaven's resources – including angels – are released.
Jesus said, "Don't you realize that I could ask My Father for thousands of angels to protect us, and He would send them instantly?" (Matt. 26:53,
NLT). We see this in action shortly afterward, in Acts, when the Church was praying for Peter, and an angel broke him out of prison.
Through prayers of petition, God releases His power, the Spirit moves upon hearts and divine
orchestration takes place.
4. Prayers of Petition Reveal God as Your Loving Father
Jesus compared our requests of the Father with an earthly child asking a father for food. He said, "...how
much more will your Father in Heaven give good gifts to those who ask Him!" (Matt. 7:11, NIV). Here, Jesus reminds us that our requests are those of greatly loved children!
We are not asking from a position of poverty, lack
or spiritual abandonment (i.e., an orphan spirit). No! Our Father is ever-present, ever-ready and ever-delighted to give. We ask from the revelation of our identity as loved children of God.
We know that what our Father has
ordered is in the "pantry." It is in Heaven's storehouse, having already been set aside for us, and all we need to do is simply ask.
5. Bold Asking Demonstrates Our Close Relationship
asking comes from familiarity in a close relationship. Jesus said, "No longer do I call you servants... but I have called you friends..." (John 15:15, ESV). He added that friends know the master's business! Then He talked about asking the Father in His name.
It is because of Jesus' sacrifice on the Cross that we can stand washed and clean before a loving Father (John 3:16). And relating to Him as the Father – making requests to Him – brings Jesus joy. So, let's bring back simple
petition into our prayer vocabulary and delight in it – because God does!
6. Thanksgiving Will Add Power to Your Petition
When we thank God for answering our prayers before we have seen
an outcome, we express our trust in God, because as His beloved child, we know that in the very breath of asking, something good is on the way!
Jesus began His prayers to the Father with thanksgiving (Matt. 11:25, Lk. 10:21,
John 11:41). And, at times, He simply thanked the Father and went on to exercise His power, like when He stood before Lazarus' tomb and said, "...'Father, I thank You that You have heard Me'" (John 11:41, NASB), implying He had already prayed – which
of course He had.
Thanksgiving is the voice of childlike faith – and the honor of a seasoned prayer warrior.
7. God Receives the Glory in the Answer to Your Prayer
When God answers a simple prayer of petition, who receives the glory? God does. The person praying does not receive credit, for they have simply expressed their dependence upon God. In fact, they may have shared that prayer request with others.
Further, there is no credit given to the "type" of prayer used. And this is a reminder – our faith should not be in the type of prayer we are using! It's true that those of us who have learned more about prayer over the years have
many "tools" in our prayer closet. Paul the apostle even refers to various types of prayer (Eph. 6:18).
So, yes, we can step into declarations and prophetic decrees, and release God's word of power. Or we can take a heavenly
standpoint for something to be done, when led by the Spirit – and that's the key. However, let's always check where the glory or "credit" of answered prayer is going. It should never go to a "type of prayer," but only to Jesus. Jesus is the only explanation
for the amazing miracles that will take place because we prayed in His name!
8. Your Petition Is Simple – It Takes Away “Performance"
One of the things I love about this type of
prayer is that even a brand-new Christian or a child can ask this way! No one is excluded.
No formula is needed, just a pure relationship and childlike faith. Our ability to "petition" represents the grace of God in a way
that no other kind of prayer can. Plus, it removes fear and anxiety from our lives, as we hand over our needs to God (Phil. 4:6).
Prayer is not mysterious; it is not "deep." Prayer is most powerful when it is simple. So, let's
take care not to fall from the glorious heights of simplicity (2 Cor. 11:3); instead, let's embrace prayer in its purest form. In our day, humble petitions made in Jesus' name will release great power.
Something Good Is on
Oh dear one, loved by God, no matter how brief, no matter how inarticulate your prayers – even your tears and cries for help – they are heard by Him.
Perhaps you have been
in a low place recently, or have been crying out to God on behalf of someone you love. You can be assured, regardless of what it looks like right now, something good is on the way, because your Father is in the picture of your life, and He is good.
Know that there is a storehouse, and it's open in Heaven. There are supplies with your name on them! There is a provision available for you right now – all yours for the asking – for your Father "owns the store."
By Helen Calder
528 Ellsworth St. SW
Albany, OR 97321