What Hinders Prayer?

After days, months, and maybe even years of praying for the same thing, the inevitable question will arise: What am I doing wrong? This is a natural thought, and thankfully, like all things, God through His word provides answers.

The short answer is: probably nothing. When I started asking this question, I would little by little introduce different things, hoping it was the “key” to unlock my prayers. A few days in a row I would only pray on my knees. I’m even embarrassed to say, once I prayed with my head covered (ala 1 Corinthians 11), though thankfully the Holy Spirit intervened and I couldn’t even finish. You may have already experienced similar feelings about what you may be doing wrong in your prayers. Some people start googling for a special Infertility Prayer or saint to beseech. Fortunately, the Bible gives no such instruction about how a Christian must pray, physically, in order to be heard. Your first response to this should be great praise; there are thousands of religions which, in their man-made attempts to reach God, have many specific rules about how to pray. But the only true covenant of grace does not dictate special clothing, buildings, times of day, languages, specific wording, postures, or other people by which we must access God (besides Christ). The truth is,  “this is the confidence that we have toward Him, that if we ask anything according to His will He hears us” [I John 5]. When Jesus taught on prayer, He emphasized the heart and the things we should pray about. You can read these teachings in Matthew 6 and 7.search me

The harder answer to this question is: possibly something. While we know that our outward expression of prayer does not affect its being heard or answered, we can be certain that something does: the inside. The hard truth is that prayers will be hindered by unconfessed sin. It only took my husband and me a couple months of praying for a baby before we stopped and reflected together on any sin issue that may be standing between us and God. I cannot tell you what yours is, if any, but I cannot lie to you and say there is no possible reason, on your part, for why God hasn’t answered your prayers. There may be, and you have to deal with it. I encourage you and your husband to search your hearts to see if there is any sin or continual sin issue that must be dealt with before you can continue petitioning God for a child. If you want to search your heart further regarding sin issues that could be hindering your prayers, I direct you towards this excellent article, which lists six that are mentioned in scripture: http://www.challies.com/christian-living/six-ways-to-hinder-your-prayers. They include selfish motives, family discord, and doubt [Yikes, right? I’ll stop there and let you read the rest].

I will discuss later some other reasons why God may not being granting you your requests, but they are not necessarily things you can control. To start, I recommend reading my post, with accompanying songs, on redefining “blessing,” and consider how your attitude and heart can change and grow through God’s “no.”

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One thought on “What Hinders Prayer?

  1. Pingback: A Method for Prayer | Redeeming Infertility

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