Fearfully Wonderfully Me

Growing in God and Inspiring Young Women Through Faith and Fashion

Tag: Prayer (page 1 of 3)

3 Myths About Prayer (And How to Pray Authentically)

Jesus, I need You right now. How many times have I whispered these words–or sobbed them–in desperation.

When nothing else works, and all of my strength is used up, I finally let down my defenses and say the simple words. I let God in.

But that’s the thing about prayer that most people don’t understand. Even I didn’t understand for the longest time. Prayer is not a one-way request line to heaven, but an intimate conversation with God.

Sometimes it’s messy. Sometimes it’s silly. But it’s always real and always raw.

Of course, we must unlearn a lot of what culture and other Christians have taught us about prayer in order to fully dive into these real conversations with Jesus. Read on to learn 3 myths about prayer, and how you can pray boldly and authentically.

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3 Myths About Prayer and How to Pray Authentically

Myth #1: Prayer Needs to Sound Holy

You know holy prayers. The ones that sound all reverent, tip-toeing around raw human emotions that are a little undignified or ugly.

The one thing we must understand to combat the lie of holy prayers is that holiness is not something we can attain by ourselves. If we could, then Jesus’s sacrifice on the cross would be a wasted effort.

And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all. (Hebrews 10:10 NIV)

Let me tell you this, lovely one. The death of our beautiful Savior was not in vain. And when we choose to give our lives to Christ, we are giving up our own false sense of holiness for His true holiness.

So if our prayers don’t need to sound holy, what should they sound like?

The opposite of a holy front is vulnerability. God doesn’t want what sounds good or proper, He wants what’s in your heart. The pain, the fear, the anger, the joy. All of it. Of course we should still view God with reverence, but we can worship God’s holiness and still be vulnerable.

When my heart was grieved and my spirit embittered, I was senseless and ignorant; I was a brute beast before you. Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand. (Psalm 73:21-23 NIV)

The author of this Psalm isn’t pretending, nor is he holding back. Real vulnerability is humility. It’s trusting God enough to surrender our feelings, and in return, let Him fill us with His Holy Spirit.

Myth #2: Prayer Needs to Be Long

Have you ever been in a prayer circle with someone who takes forever to pray? Of course, they might just have a lot on their heart, and that’s cool. But I’ve noticed that when someone around me prays long and intricate prayers, I want to copy them.

God isn’t impressed by the length of our prayers. Longer prayers aren’t more attention getting, nor do they grant us more favor.

This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. (1 John 5:14 NIV)

Our prayers do not need to be loud and showy in order to get God’s attention. When it comes to prayer, we as Christians can boldly approach God and ask Him anything. He hears us, and He knows just what we need.

Instead of longer prayers, we need bolder prayers. If we have the confidence that God is listening and is always there to help us, then we are empowered to pray boldly and simply. 

Myth #3: Prayer Needs to Be Repetitive

I know I’ve been here. My anxiety-prone mind loves repeating prayers–just to be sure God hears me. As if repeating a specific prayer will make things go my way.

But we know prayer doesn’t work like that. God already knows our thoughts (Psalm 139:2) and is not impressed by a lot of fancy words.

And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words. “Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him.” (Matthew 6:7-8 NKJV)

God is a good Father whom we can trust. Our repetitive prayers can be a sign that we don’t trust Him to do what is right in our lives.

This doesn’t mean we can’t ever repeat a prayer. In fact, the Bible tells us to be persistent in prayer. The difference is in our level of trust.

When we don’t have faith that God will come through for us, we repeat our prayers out of fear. However, persistent prayer can be a reminder of how faithful our Heavenly Father is.

Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NIV)

Prayer looks different for everyone, and there is no correct length or specific words to say in order for God to hear us. True prayer is a conversation with Jesus. It is pouring your heart out and then waiting in God’s presence. It is vulnerable, bold, and persistent.

Authentic prayer is when our heart’s desire is to connect with the heart of God.


Thanks for reading! Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below 🙂

Check out my 3 Myths About Purity post here! 

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Why Prayer is Not a Waste of Time

On what should’ve been a quiet, peaceful Sunday morning, our nation was rattled by the tragic news of a shooting at a church in Sutherland Springs, Texas. Over two dozen are dead and many have been injured.

In the face of such tragedy, many of us rally together in prayer and peaceful vigils. However, some people on social media are saying that prayers are useless. They don’t do anything to help, and therefore, a waste of time.

As a Christian who believes deeply in the power of prayer, these statements really made me pause to think. If you’re on the fence about prayer, or are just worn down by all of the tragedies in our nation, then this post is for you.

A New Perspective

There are things in this world we just don’t understand. We live in a world where bad things happen and injustice seems to be the norm.

So where’s God in all of this? Why isn’t He answering our prayers?

 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33 NIV)

You see, Jesus never promised His followers an easy life with no problems or disasters. On the contrary, there is a target on every Christian’s back solely based on their devotion to God.

Our perspective on life is wrong. We are only human beings restricted by the confines of time and space. God sees the whole picture–from beginning to end–and He has promised us a victorious ending (Revelation 21).

Sin is the root cause of the evil in this world, and it is the reason people are filled with anger, hatred, and violence. This is more than just a political or cultural issue–it’s a spiritual one.

The only cure for sin is Jesus, and our pursuit should be the freedom of His saving grace.

Prayer in Action

People want action in times of crisis. We want a sense of control in turbulent times. However, one must not discount the power and motivation of prayer. Prayer is an action of love and faith.

If we pray for those in need, we are uniting with them both mentally and spiritually. We are sacrificing time and energy to focus our hearts on our neighbors.

That’s action.

But the Bible tells us not to stop at prayer. Rather, we should carry our faith into loving deeds in the physical realm as well.

You see that his faith and his actions were working together, and his faith was made complete by what he did. (James 2:22 NIV)

When we pray for others, we take the center of our hearts off of ourselves. This acts as a catalyst for real change in both our lives and the lives of those around us.

I know of Christians who send their prayers on social media, but many of these saints also give money and sacrifice time to help disaster relief organizations.

When we pray, God transforms our hearts into vessels of compassion and action.

Prayer in compassion and action

A Spiritual Battle

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. (Ephesians 6:12 NIV)

The visible world around us if often distracting and terrifying. However, it is only temporary. Our true battle isn’t with social or political issues (although they shouldn’t be ignored).

There is a spiritual war being waged against God’s sons and daughters right now. The devil knows that Jesus has won, and that He is coming to reign on earth soon (Matthew 24). This is causing the enemy to attack God’s children like never before, in the hopes of preventing one more soul from being saved.

Remember, we don’t have the whole perspective. We can’t see into eternity or into the battles that are taking place in the heavenly realms. I don’t have all the answers for life’s tragedies, but I do know this:

God sees our struggles and He hears our prayers. Jesus loves us, and can turn any situation–no matter how tragic–into a message of redemption and salvation. 

Don’t stop praying, lovely one. It could be the very action that saves someone’s soul.

Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. (James 5:16 NIV)

Thanks for reading! Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below 🙂

Connect with me on Instagram @fearfullywonderfullyme

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Casual Friday Fashion + Prayer Request

Happy Friday lovely readers and followers! I’ve been up to my elbows in exams and course work, but by God’s grace I am making it! I must admit it has been a struggle though. My IBS has been flaring up, and I am consulting with my specialists to try and figure out where to go from here. I think I need a whole regimen change, so please pray for direction and healing!  

Today’s post is about everyday casual fashion. Sometimes what a girl needs is a good pair of jeans, a comfy sweater, and a big mug of coffee or tea!

 

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I used a lot of gray for this collage because it’s my favorite neutral. And for all of my crazy cat ladies out there–check out those flats! The cat mug is also adorable.

I paired a comfy pullover with some boyfriend jeans for a casual, yet chic look. I also like taupe eye shadow to keep things casual and natural. Thankfully there are lots of affordable neutral palettes at drug stores.


I hope you liked this post! Please feel free to comment and share. I also want to thank you for keeping me in your prayers. I plan on doing another health update in the near future!

Like my fashion posts? See all of my collages and more on my Polyvore blog.

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Liebster Award + Announcement!

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Hello lovely readers and followers! Today is a very special Friday because I have two announcements:

  1. I am honored to be a contributing author for Rethink, a website that challenges thinking on God, the church, and culture. You can find my first post here.
  2. I’ve been nominated for my third Liebster Award!

Fellow blogger and friend Courtney from 1 Timothy 4:12 Girl has nominated me for this Liebster Award. She is a Christian blogger who is very passionate about her faith and is super sweet. Please check out her blog when you get the chance 🙂

The rules are

  1. Answer the 11 questions you are provided with by the person who nominated you.
  2. Nominate 11 new bloggers who have less than 500 followers.
  3. Post the Liebster award to your blog.

The questions are

1.What is the funniest thing that has happened to you?

I’m sure that this isn’t the funniest thing to happen to me, but it is incredible. I absolutely HATE running, but one year in high school my friends tried to convince me to join track with them. I even went to track practice to watch them and took the forms home. Of course I never filled them out or went back, but somehow I ended up on the roster anyway…with perfect attendance! Just to be funny, I went with my friends to where the coach was handing out awards. I thought I should get one for my perfect attendance, but sadly I didn’t :p

2. What is your dream job?

A writer (guess I’m on my way!) and a Christian counselor.

3. What is your favorite song and why?

My favorite songs change by my mood and what’s going on in my life. Currently I’m loving:

UnsteadyVitamin String Quartet tribute to X Ambassadors. 

This song rocks, but string instruments take it to a new soulful level. I’m going through a hard time right now with my Grandma being very ill, so I can relate with the unsteadiness of life.

Gracious TempestHillsong Young and Free (This song is incredible).

4. Do you have any pets and if so what are they like?

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This is Luna Belle. She’s a fat cat who loves Bibles, pens, and taking up half of my bed. She’s very chatty and sassy ^_^ I also have a shy parakeet named Sunny Dee.

5. Are you a night owl or early bird? How early do you wake up or how late do you stay up?

I’m a night owl for sure (a very common family trait). That is also when I am my most creative. I try to go to sleep by midnight, but that can be hard. I normally wake up between 8:30-9:00am in the summer, but when fall semester starts I will have to wake up earlier.

6. When you were little did you have imaginary friends? What were they like?

I had major crushes on Freddie from Scoobie Doo and Batman when I was a little girl. They were also my imaginary boyfriends lol.

7. What is your favorite food? And your favorite dessert?

I love breakfast food, and I have an obsession for peanut butter. Ice cream is my favorite dessert, followed by s’mores.

8.  What are your beliefs?

I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and died on the cross to save me from my sins. He is my Lord and Savior. I believe in the power of grace, and that God’s grace is the only thing that can truly free us. I believe that everyone has beauty in them, and that they are worth trying to save. I believe in being strong when everything is falling apart. I believe in being kind–even to those who don’t deserve it. I believe in hugs. And I believe that God can work miracles–even today.

9. What are the things you stand for?

Jesus Christ, the Gospel, faith, love, mercy, grace, freedom, and truth.

10. What is the most important character trait in someone?

Honesty. If someone can be honest with themselves and others, then it opens the door to communication, trust, and respect. Honesty also keeps us humble.

11. Who is your role model in life?

Of course Jesus Christ is the one I strive to be most like. An earthly role model would be my Mother, who lives and breathes with strength and grace.

The new nominees are

Spotlight

Wonderfully Made in His Image

Hearts 2016

Truth in Palmyra 

Karina’s Thought

Loluwaand

Glimpses of the Greater

Seeker of Truth

Dainty M

Cherry Drop Princess

Kingdom Scribe

I guess you all can answer the same questions, as they are pretty awesome!

Thanks for reading! Please feel free to comment and share 🙂

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Limitless Faith

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If you’re reading this, then there’s a really good chance you’re a Christian. Now I’m not a numbers person (hence why I’m a blogger), so I can’t give statistics. However, there are a lot of people–some even calling themselves Christians–who say they believe in God, but leave Him in the backgrounds of their lives. There’s no judgment here as this used to be me (and sometimes still is unfortunately).

Here’s what I don’t understand. How can someone truly believe in God and not want more of Him? How can you believe in an all-powerful being who created the heavens, galaxies, and Earth and all of its inhabitants, and not want more?

Believe it, God is real. Just look around at nature, and the evidence is clear. The thing is, we live in a culture that limits God. We live in a society that doesn’t experience an overflow of healings and miracles because we don’t have faith.

Even though God is all-powerful and can do all things, we hinder Him by our lack of faith and inattention.

Jesus said to him, “If you can believe, all things are possible to him who believes” (Mark 9:23 NKJV). 

It’s not that God has turned His back on us, but we’ve actually turned our backs on Him.

During my college career, I’ve had the honor of studying various religions and belief systems, learning amazing things from each of them. But there’s something different about Jesus that none of these other faiths have. 

With Jesus, you can truly experience God. You can be in His presence and have a relationship with Him. The reason I’m writing this? Because I know God, and I believe He put these thoughts on my heart. This has burdened my soul long enough to write about it.

With Jesus, anything is possible. Maybe we won’t get everything we want or at the exact time we want it, but God is good. He wants to be with us. He loves us. He’s constantly in pursuit of us. 

God’s still here. He’s still moving and working miracles if only we would take the time to stop and worship Him–to invite Jesus into our lives.

So here’s your chance. Invite God everywhere. Not just to church, the dinner table, or a bedside prayer.

Invite His presence into the minute and mundane, as well as the extraordinary.

Invite God to your work or school. Invite God to your daily  commute.

Invite God to your relationships and finances.

Invite God to your chores and burdens–into your joys and sorrows.

Invite God to the miraculous, where He can be felt like wildfire.

Don’t limit God, and don’t limit yourself. 

 But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:26 NKJV).

If you don’t have a relationship with Jesus and want to know more, read this. God bless you!

Thanks for reading! Please feel free to comment and share. I love hearing from you 🙂

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