Recently our team received an email with the subject line: “How do I know God’s best for me?” And it is a fabulous and powerful question.
One of the most important facets of learning how to discern God’s voice in your life is by immersing yourself in constant prayer. The more you pray, the more you will get to know our Heavenly Father.
The closer of a relationship you have with God, the easier it will be to hear His voice!
What does it mean to pray specifically?
The key and beginning of praying specifically is faith. We are told in Matthew 17:20 that we can have faith to move mountains and that anything is possible.
We were also instructed by Jesus to be specific in our prayers. He could have told His followers to pray to be blessed, or for help, but no he said, “Give us this day our daily bread” and urged his followers to be specific.
God wants to hear what’s on your heart. Tell him the details, like you would tell a good friend.
How do you get to this point in your faith?
I believe this type of faith is obtained by choosing to trust God (Psalm 31:14), regardless of the outcome, that he has an incredible plan for our lives.
This type of faith comes with such intimate joy and peace (Romans 15:13), that if he says to wait on what we think we want, we still have contentment in the meantime (Romans 8:24-28).
Paul knew difficult times; he was in prison and he was shipwrecked. He also knew hunger, pain, and fear; but through it all, Paul still found the spiritual satisfaction only the Lord can give.
Philippians 4:12-13, “I know what it is to be in need, I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret is to be content in every situation.”
Paul was a perfect example of how God can change one’s heart toward Christ. The enemy tried attacking him at every angle in order to prevent him from spreading the love of God that he had found and the gospel, but it did not stop him (Acts 16:25).
Regardless of our circumstance, God wants us to trust Him
So, regardless of our circumstance, God wants us to trust him and talk it through with him! Most of us know Matthew 7:7-8, “Ask and you shall receive, seek, and you will find, knock and the door will be open to you.”
God wants us to go to him with our desires, Psalm 37:4 states: “Delight in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.”
He cares about how we feel about what is going on (Psalm 55:22) and wants us to make our requests known to him (Philippians 4:6).
For example, when I get an itch for something new or ponder on an idea for my life, it is possible I am just letting myself get antsy, or even ahead of God.
Sometimes, however, it is God guiding and telling me to begin praying for the next chapter he plans to reveal, or an added blessing.
Then I obey, I intentionally separate myself from distractions and find a quiet place. God speaks through Scripture, so I dig in.
Through prayer, a meditate on his word, and then while waiting on God, he soon begins to confirm. For me personally, it is usually by a conversation (a prophetic word from someone perhaps), that will keep happening over a period of time by different people.
This is How Prayer Works
God has made it very clear in Scripture that not only does prayer work (James 5:14-16; Acts 9:40), he encourages us to pray specifically (Matthew 21:22; Mark 11:24), and teaches us how:
Have a willing and obedient heart. – Luke 11:1-10, “Lord teach us how to pray…”
The first step is to have a humble spirit and recognize God’s authority over your life. Understand he loves you wants the best for you, and has a beautiful plan should you submit to his will (Jeremiah 29:11).
Matthew 6:33, “Seek first his kingdom and righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” This means pondering on his goodness and pursuing him in all aspects of your life.
John 15:7, “If you abide in me and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish and it shall be done for you.”
Have his words hidden in your heart (Psalm 119:11). Do not limit God! Do not ask for something because you think you don’t deserve it, because that is not true (Psalm 139:13-14)!
Have faith and trust in God’s perfect timing (Ecclesiastes 3:1, “There is a time for everything…”). Trust that there is a reason for the waiting seasons in between (Lamentations 3:25-26).
Navigating God’s best for me has always been tricky. But I realized it’s more about Him than anything else.
I am an incredibly passionate person and one who wants to do anything and everything. Therefore, I have to be careful and really discern what is me and what is from the Lord. These are some guidelines that help me stay in check and I pray they help you!