Here is a new prayer resource I developed designed to help you overcome offence and grow in the area of trust.
Download (pdf) – TRUST – 5 Prayers to Grow in Intimacy
T-R-U-S-T: 5 Prayers for Growing In Intimacy with God
Intimacy is an important part of a loving relationship, including our relationship with God.
Unfortunately, many of us have never been taught how to cultivate that aspect of our relationship with God, or that it was even available to us. The good news is, not only is intimacy available to all believers through Gods indwelling Spirit, but there are practical ways to grow and experience a great sense of connectedness with Him.
Before we discus those practices, we need to understand the foundational building block of intimacy and how it effects our relationship with God (and others). What is that foundational element? TRUST.
Trust is like a door that stands between two meeting rooms named “Intimacy” and “Offence”. When trust exists, the door to intimacy stands open; making engagement in deep meaningful relationship possible. However, many times disappointment, hurt or unmet expectations challenge our faith in Gods goodness and we find it difficult to fully trust His leadership or take Him at His word. As a result, the door of trust begins to close, and we find ourselves feeling distant from God and living on the other side of that door – in the place of offence.
“And if anyone is not offended because of Me, he is blessed.” – Matthew 11:6 (HCSB)
Growing in intimacy requires more than the right aesthetic environment; a comfy chair, some worship music or a beautiful vista in nature; it requires a heart that is confident in love and living without offence. That is why these five prayers are so powerful! Each prayer is designed to move us from fear (which is the opposite of trust) toward faith, and begin opening up the door of trust so we can experience unhindered fellowship with God in His word and through prayer.
These are not the only prayers that will help you grow in intimacy with God, but they are a great place to start. You will notice that all five prayers are rooted in the truth of Scripture. Trusting His Word is the most important step in this journey.
As well, I strongly encourage you to pray these prayers out loud. When we speak, we make a confession that builds faith in the one who hears it; in this case, our own hearts. (Romans 10:17) Speaking the truth of Gods Word over our own hearts has a powerful effect on us.
Finally, remember that prayer is a conversation, not a monologue. As you pray, pause long enough to listen to the Holy Spirit as He responds with words of affirmation, encouragement and direction.
So without further delay, here are my “5 Prayers for Growing in Intimacy with God”.
T – R – U – S – T
T – “THANK YOU” – Expressing gratitude is an essential part of keeping our hearts un-offended with the Lord and His leadership; and turning our hearts toward agreement with Him. As I read my Bible I often turn what I read into a prayer, thanking Jesus for the truth I find written in His word.
“Don’t worry about anything, but in everything, through prayer and petition with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God.” – Philippians 4:6 (HCSB)
Although the principle of gratitude is drawn from the above verse, we can incorporate this practice into all of our Bible reading, turning the whole of Scripture into our prayer text.
John 10:27 “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.”
Prayer: “Jesus. Thank You that I am yours and that I can hear Your voice. Jesus, Thank You that You know me, and have given me the grace to follow after You. Thank You for being an excellent leader!”
R – “REVEAL” – ‘Reveal to me your ways, wisdom and goodness. Enlighten my eyes that I may see wondrous things from your law, and lead me in the way of everlasting.’
When we don’t see things “Gods way” it is easy for us to think that we know better. However, when we see life through His eyes, the good wisdom of His ways becomes like a treasure to us; leading us to repentance as we trust in Him.
“I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ…may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. ” – Ephesians 1:17 (NIV)
U – “UNITE” – ‘Bring me into agreement with your heart. Make us one as you are one, united in the light of your truth and understanding.’ (Eph 2:11-22, John 17:20-23, Amos 3:3, Phil 2:1-2)
It is one thing to know the will of God, and another thing to join ourselves to that will through our agreement. This prayer moves us past knowledge by expressing our desire for fellowship.
“…that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.” – John 17:22b-23 (NKJV)
“..Not my will but Yours be done” – Matt 26:42
“…Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.” – Matt 6:10
S – “STRENGTHEN” – Jesus, make me strong in the inner man, that I would be able to endure all things and remain with you; being fully confident in Your love for me. (1 Cor 13:7, 1 John 3)
Confidence in God’s goodness and love towards us is our greatest strength. However, fear makes it hard to trust. To overcome fear we must grow in our confidence of the Lords love for us. This prayer asks for our weak love to be made stronger through ongoing fellowship and trust.
“I pray that…he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith [trust].
And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know [intimacy] this love that surpasses knowledge…” – Ephesians 3:16-19 (NIV)
T – “TENDERIZE” – “Soften my heart with the oil of your presence. Give me a willing spirit to run after you and obey your commands. Let me be found with a heart after you.” (Psalm 51:10-12, Matt 13:15, Song of Songs 1:4, Psalm 119:31-32)
Offence hardens our heart and dulls our ears, making it difficult to hear Gods voice or be moved by His words. Having a tender heart makes us more receptive to His leadership and opens up the door for a greater measure of fellowship with the spirit.
“..I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart.” – Ezekiel 36:26 (NLT)