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The One Thing You Need To Know To Pray With Absolute Confidence

By Chip Ingram

Praying with confidence is more than mustering up determination. There’s a key ingredient that we’ll explore together, and also take a look at how it can show up in your everyday spiritual life.

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If you’d like to jump ahead, use the links below. 

Together, let’s take a look at this verse:

I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God so that you may know that you have eternal life. This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us—whatever we ask—we know that we have what we asked of him. – 1 John 5:13-15

Have you ever tried hard to pray with confidence? What did it look like for you? Did you have the assurance the writer talks about in the verse?

Maybe you started out discouraged, but then you turned desire into determination and prayed with boldness that God would answer your prayer. I’ve been there many times in life, and eventually I learned that I was missing one key ingredient.

It’s not an element that will magically turn a prayer into a reality; it’s the ingredient that will change not only how you pray, but what you pray. It’s the one thing you need to pray with absolute confidence. 

It’s not will.
It’s not a desire.
And it’s not a wish. 

It’s faith. 

WHAT IS FAITH?

What do we know about faith? Faith is “being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” (Hebrews 11:1)

The words to notice are being sure and certain. Faith is having absolute confidence that something that hasn’t happened yet will happen, and that something that you can’t see will come to be. That’s what faith is.

Faith boils down to: Do you believe what God says? Any time God gives us a promise and we act on it, that’s biblical faith.

Do you pray in faith? Faith boils down to: Do you believe what God says? Any time God gives us a promise and we act on it, that’s biblical faith. Click To Tweet

WHAT DOES FAITHFUL, CONFIDENT PRAYING LOOK LIKE?

When you pray, are you coming to God with absolute certainty and confidence that what you’re asking for will be given to you? When you bow your head, are you certain that the things that you’re going to ask for, God is going to answer?

Let’s walk through the verse again. It says  —

  1. Believe in the name of the Son of God.
  2. Ask according to His will.
  3. He hears us (and the verse repeats, “we know that he hears us”).
  4. We know that we have what we asked of Him!

As we continue, let’s explore the second point, that we ask according to His will. For many believers, this is a new concept, and yet it’s a very encouraging promise given to us in the Scriptures. Actually, there are hundreds of promises in the Scriptures for us to pray, but we’ll touch on just a few here. 

Watch The Power of Prayer Discipleship Series on Youtube

3 Promises From The Bible You Can Pray With Confidence For God to Deliver

1. God gives wisdom.

The Creator offers His followers wisdom. 

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. – James 1:5

Are you trying to decide how to handle a difficult situation in your life? Are you on the fence about a decision and need wisdom? 

This verse assures us that God will provide wisdom. You can pray with confidence knowing He will fulfill His commitment. 

Here’s the condition, though: we have to hold up our end of the bargain. The next verse says:

But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. 

Praying with confidence starts with faith.

Today, you can open your Bible to James 1:5 and pray:

God, please give me wisdom. I know it’s according to Your will because it’s here in Your Word.  Help me to have courage to act according to the wisdom given. 

2. God delivers.

Sometimes people find themselves entangled in a stronghold where sin has a tight hold on their lives. Could that be you? God has a promise for you, too. Pray specifically and God guarantees that He’ll hear it.

No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. – 1 Corinthians 10:13

The condition is that you take that way of escape He’s going to offer. Maybe you need to confide in a friend or a spouse about your addiction or struggle. Your way out might be joining a 12-step program or committing to a drastic adjustment like removing temptations from your home. 

Whatever it is, God says you can pray with confidence for deliverance.

Today, you can open your Bible to 1 Corinthians 10:13 and pray: 

God, show me the way of deliverance. 

More on prayer: 10 Reminders Straight From The Bible To Pray Faithfully

3. Jesus offers rest. 

For many individuals and families, busyness has become a way of life. But truthfully, you’re exhausted and spent and what you crave most is rest. 

Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” – Matthew 11:28-30

When you ask for rest, Jesus will step in and calm the storm; He’ll restore your body and emotions. 

It might be time for you to shut out everything and spend time with Him, slowing down enough to hear Him telling you where to make changes in your life. God will show you the difference between His yoke and all of the world’s “oughts” and “shoulds” and demands. 

When you walk in His will, He can renew you from the inside out.

Today, you can open your Bible to Matthew 11:28-30 and simply pray:

God, you said I could come to you in faith and you would give me what I’m asking. I come to You because I need true rest. Give me your yoke. 

Pray with an open Bible, asking God to fulfill what He's promised. Do you need wisdom? Deliverance? Rest? These are just three of the promises we can pray for with confidence. Click To Tweet

WHEN WE AREN’T SURE HOW TO PRAY

Finally, sometimes we aren’t even sure how to pray or what promise to hold onto. In this case, we can take comfort in a verse from Romans:

Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. And he who searches hearts knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.  – Romans 8:26-27

In these moments, you can ask, in dependence upon the Holy Spirit: Show me how to pray here. 

You can pray this prayer with confidence, knowing He’ll overcome your weakness and intercede for you — according to the will of God. 

I hope you’ll examine your prayer life and determine if you’re truly praying in faith, and then depend on God as you pray with confidence, claiming these promises and many more.

Find more life-changing lessons on prayer on Daily Discipleship Course on YouTube, The Power of Prayer. We’ll cover struggles like prayerlessness, wrong motives and unforgiveness, and explore their impact on our lives. Tune in today for hope and encouragement. 

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Written By

Chip Ingram

Founder & Teaching Pastor, Living on the Edge

Chip Ingram is the CEO and teaching pastor of Living on the Edge, an international teaching and discipleship ministry. A pastor for over thirty years, Chip has a unique ability to communicate truth and challenge people to live out their faith. He is the author of many books, including The Real God, Culture Shock and The Real Heaven. Chip and his wife, Theresa, have four grown children and twelve grandchildren and live in California.

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