For the last 28 years, I have prayed every day with all kinds of prayers and requests; however, there are seven prayers that stand out among the rest. Although they are simple in nature, God has powerfully answered each one and has used them to produce great spiritual growth and needed direction for my life.
Here are the seven simple prayers that have changed my life:
"What is my purpose in life?"
I began praying this as a new Christian and prayed it daily for years. God answered this prayer by encountering me with my call to the ministry 10 years after I first uttered it. Because I persistently sought God's will regarding my purpose, I am now living His dream for my life. As God revealed His call on Jeremiah's life, so He longs to reveal our unique call: "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; and before you were born I sanctified you, and I ordained you a prophet to the nations" (Jer. 1:5).
"Anoint me for what I am called to do."
God's empowerment on what we do for Him delivers supernatural results. I proactively prayed this long before my calling was revealed. I knew that whatever my purpose, I needed God's power to do it. I am still desperate for God's anointing, so I continue to pray this prayer every day. I want Luke 4:18a to be a reality in my life: "The Spirit of the Lord is upon Me, because He has anointed Me."
"I need wisdom and discernment."
God's perspective regarding every person and circumstance in my life proves invaluable. Daily, I ask God for uncommon wisdom and discernment. I pray this at the start of each day as well as throughout the day as needed. I am grateful that wisdom is ours for the asking: "If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all men liberally and without criticism, and it will be given to him" (James 1:5).
"Root all selfishness and pride out of my life."
The opposition to the kingdom of God is the kingdom of Me, and, oh boy, did I have a lot of me when I became born again (pride still tries to rear its ugly head).! God answers this prayer by using the people and circumstances in my life to cause me to die to self and walk in Christlike humility. This ongoing pruning process is painful, but necessary to produce much fruit. "God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble" (James 4:6b).
"Increase my pain threshold."
Pain is inevitable in our Christian walk. I never want to draw a line in the spiritual sand and say, "No more pain!" If I do, I stymie my growth. "No pain, no gain." I want to submit to God when He stretches me, takes me out of my comfort zone, and gives me needed correction. I always want the pain of rejection, the ache of forgiving someone who has wronged me or the sting of persecution to make me more like Christ. As Paul the apostle promises in 2 Corinthians 4:17, "Our light affliction, which lasts but for a moment, works for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory,
"I ask You for one divine appointment per day."
Winning a vast harvest of souls has always been my foremost concern; this is accomplished one person at a time. Wow, does God answer this prayer! Every day, God leads me to at least one unsaved person in order to bring them closer to receiving Christ as Savior. I marvel how He arranges divine encounters in the least likely of places and circumstances. After all, Jesus proclaims in Mark 1:17b, "Come, follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men."
"Expose what needs to be exposed, reveal what needs to be revealed and bring into the light that which is kept in darkness."
Asking God to expose the adversary's plots and plans is crucial in spiritual warfare. When God uncovers the devil's strategies against my life, He makes the invisible visible and the subtle blatant. This prayer can make the difference between victory and defeat in spiritual battle. As Ephesians 6:11 reminds us, "Put on the whole armor of God that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil." Prayer is a piece of the armor of God.
What life-changing prayers have you prayed? What prompted you to pray them? How has God answered them? What effect have they had on your spiritual growth?
Jamie Morgan is the lead pastor of Life Church, Williamstown, New Jersey, and author of A Journey to Ministry: Discover Your Calling, Purpose and Destiny.
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