Do you need direction from the Lord concerning a specific situation but don’t know how to receive it? Do you desire to hear the Lord answer you whenever you pray? The good news is that you can have the answers you need and the rewarding prayer life you desire. When you pray, you can be confident that you will be able to identify the Holy Spirit’s voice and that you will receive the answers to your prayers.
— by Kenneth Copeland
Colossians 1:9-10 reminds us that a rich prayer life is possible: “So we have not stopped praying for you since we first heard about you. We ask God to give you complete knowledge of his will and to give you spiritual wisdom and understanding. Then the way you live will always honour and please the Lord, and your lives will produce every kind of good fruit. All the while, you will grow as you learn to know God better and better.”
The Apostle Paul wrote this passage to the church at Colossae to tell them exactly how he was praying for them. He wanted them to experience the same depth and richness that he and other believers experienced. He asked that they would have:
- Complete knowledge of God’s will
- Spiritual wisdom
Prayer is one of the best ways to receive these spiritual treasures. In Jeremiah 33:3, God promised, “Ask me and I will tell you remarkable secrets you do not know about things to come.” Those “remarkable secrets” are “complete knowledge of His will, and spiritual wisdom and understanding.”
Gaining these spiritual treasures requires tenacity. It takes more than simply bowing your head before your meals or sending up a quick prayer when things get tough. It requires seeking the Lord continually. Below are three habits to help you receive the direction you need every day.
- Set Aside a Designated Prayer Time
This means keeping regular prayer times and studying the Word habitually. Setting aside daily prayer times allows you to focus on the Lord and your relationship with Him. Instead of simply coming to Him with a list of demands, you develop a relationship, and studying the Word helps strengthen that relationship. Through His Word, you begin to understand God’s will and His ways better as you strengthen your faith. You also allow Him to speak to you through His Word.
So often, people want to hear from the Holy Spirit without spending time developing that relationship. They want to treat God like a spiritual ATM. They’d like to drive up, punch in what they want, grab it and be on their way. But relationships take time. As you begin to commune with the Lord regularly, you begin to recognize the Holy Spirit’s voice more easily and hear Him more clearly.
If you want to develop your prayer life, begin by setting aside a designated prayer time. If you keep a calendar, then make an appointment with yourself. In addition to thanking and praising God for allowing you to come boldly before Him in prayer (Hebrews 4:16), begin praying Colossians 1:9-10 over yourself. Ask the Lord to “give you complete knowledge of His will and to give you spiritual wisdom and understanding” so that you “will always honour and please [Him]” and that your life “will produce every kind of good fruit…”as you learn to know [Him] better and better.”
- Spend Time Reading God’s Word
During your appointed time, spend time in God’s Word. Read a chapter or two and stand in faith, believing that God will give you the revelation you need. Slow down, listen and tune in to what the Holy Spirit may be saying to you. This isn’t a time to rush. This is a time to focus on the Lord and listen to the Holy Spirit.
- Pray in Faith
After you read the Word, pray for a while in the Spirit and with your understanding (1 Corinthians 14:15). Pray in other tongues, and ask God to give you the interpretation. He’ll do it if you ask Him in faith. You might not always get the interpretation immediately, but if you will pray with expectation, it will come eventually. It might come as you’re driving to work or while you are at work. Or it might come gradually to your spirit over a matter of weeks, but one day you will have the answer to the situation you’ve been praying about.
Mark 11:24 promises, “I tell you, you can pray for anything, and if you believe that you’ve received it, it will be yours.” As you begin praying in faith for the direction you need, it will come. Trust God that His Word is true!
See our popular infographic below to help you understand the benefits of speaking in tongues.