Have you ever been scared to pray?

It seems silly to even think about. I know how good and kind God is but sometimes I am so scared to pray.

I’m hesitant to pray because I’m afraid God will actually give me what I ask for.

Again, I feel so silly for even writing that. It sounds so contradictory. Let me explain a little.

I’m reading a devotional that talks about all the reasons Jesus died for us. In this specific devotional John Piper wrote that our good deeds are not the foundation of our acceptance but the fruit of it. Jesus didn’t die for me because my works will ever make me worthy of eternal life. Jesus died so that good works would be the effect.

He went on to say that Jesus wants us to be passionate about doing good works because we love him so much. That morning I prayed and asked God for an opportunity to serve and that my heart would be willing and passionate to use my gifts for His glory.

That Sunday I listened to a sermon where the pastor pleaded with his church to be ALL IN. He asked us to think about the purpose for which we have been saved. We read about Samuel and his answer to God when he was called:

“Speak, for your servant is listening.” – 1 Samuel 3:9

The pastor continued to tell us that there were sign ups right outside the sanctuary. He asked us to sign up and get involved.

I felt called out. God took that prayer from earlier in the week and actually gave me the opportunity to act on it. 

So, why is this a problem? It isn’t. Not really.

That Sunday was my very first Sunday in that church. I recently moved to a new town and this was the first church that I tried. I don’t know many people at this church. It’s scary to go alone to church let alone volunteer right away!

But I left that church service feeling convicted. I was so thankful that God answered my prayer and opened my eyes to a way that I can use the gifts He has given me to give back to the church and the community. 

Have I signed up? No, not yet. That day it felt like a victory to walk into a new church by myself.

But this coming Sunday I’ll make sure to get there a little early so I can sign up for an opportunity to serve.

Praying can be scary but remember that God has called each of us through His gospel. Even if it doesn’t feel like it, God is calling you to something. The question I have is how are you responding? 

Pray big prayers and answer His call with a willing heart!

– Lauren McDonald
Photo by Stephanie Greene on Unsplash