When I was a young Christian, I didn’t know how to ask God for what I wanted the most. I heard so many prayers offered up in our church assembly, but I had no idea how to approach that ‘throne of grace’ they spoke about. As I grew more and more in the faith, my prayers were simple and direct.
I didn’t struggle with what to say, I just spoke to God as if He were sitting across from me as I held an open and honest conversation with Him. Not much has changed in my prayers over the many years because I have learned that God isn’t into formalities, big words, or lofty phrasing. Prayer is simply talking to God.
In Judges 1: 12-15 there’s an encouraging story about Achsah, the daughter of Caleb. The long and short of it is that Caleb announced that the man that attacks Kirjath Sepher and conquers it, will get his daughter as his bride. That’s a nice trade off wouldn’t you say? Othniel, the son of Kenaz accomplished the victory and got Achsah.
This is an interesting story in scripture because we don’t read many accounts of women being granted property ownership besides the daughters of Zelophehad.
Achsah desired a field of land to develop and she asked her husband to go to her father on her behalf to make this request, and she was given what she asked for.
It appears that on that same occasion, she got down from the donkey she was on, and at that point, her father, Caleb, asked what she desired of him. I can hear the gentle, loving, welcoming tone in her father’s voice as his eyes locked with hers. She was confident and secure as she approached him with her petition.
She makes her request known while citing what he had given her prior to this request. “And Caleb gave her the upper springs and the lower springs” (vs. 15 NKJV).
Our heavenly Father is greater than Caleb and He too desires to grant us our petitions every time we come to Him. God has so many blessings in His hand with our names written on them. All we have to do is ask! There are some prerequisites however, when it comes to petitioning our Heavenly Father.
The first requirement is that there be no sin present prior to praying. “If I regard iniquity in my heart The Lord will not hear” (Psalm 66:18 NKJV). The next important thing to consider is our motive for asking. Is it a selfish request? In James 4:3 it says, “You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.”
Now, before we even ask, we should know whether that thing is within God’s will to even give to us. There are prayer requests that are not within the will of God to grant His children.
All request must be according to His will. Once we clear those three important things out of the way, we can proceed to the throne of grace and make our petition known to God.
God wants to bless us more than we want to be blessed, if that makes any sense. It is His joy and pleasure to fill His children’s heart with satisfaction, and He wants to see us happy.
It’s simply ours or the asking. Achsah knew that; look how freely she approached her earthly father Caleb, and how he graciously responded.
It’s also important to know what we want from God, and to know why we are asking it of Him. Before Achsah lighted off her donkey, she knew what words were going to proceed from her mouth, and she knew exactly what her intentions were in asking. She starts by citing what she was already blessed with. What an important place to start before we begin asking for stuff. The spirit of gratitude and thankfulness warms the heart of God. She was given a field; evidently, that parcel of land was dry with no way to water it.
She needed to solve that problem. She makes her request, and her father grants not only what she asked, but more than what she asked. Achsah got her blessing!
What is it that you want from God? What have you been asking Him to bless you with? Have you faithfully, and consistently petitioned Him? Achsah had no doubt that her father would grant her heart’s desire. We must come to God believing without doubt that He is able to grant our request. After we have petitioned God, we are to wait, and be still.
We’re not to try to help God along in the process. We can go to Him and ask as many times as we like, but we must not interfere with the process.
I am glad that I have learned these important steps to prayer. Just like Achsah, I have gotten what I wanted from God. I have some requests that are pending, but I know He will answer in the fullness of His time, not mine, yet, I will wait on God to perform or not perform them. Even when He says ’No my child’, I have the confidence that He will always give the thing that is best for me to have.
Patricia Stuart is a wife, mother of two, and a grandmother of four. While continuing to remain n the home after rearing children, she often engaged in arts and crafts, music ministry, and writing, which she continues to do today. Her books can be found on Amazon.
Patricia’s past of neglect and abuse has turned out to be a testimony of what God can do in the life of all who surrender to Him. Her story has become her ministry.
She has traveled throughout the states as an inspirational speaker, sharing the love of God with young girls, women’s groups, conferences and gatherings. She also shares internationally via Zoom.
God has developed her artistic abilities, allowing her works of art to be seen in local and international galleries.