Aladdin is one of my favorite Disney movies for a lot of reasons. I love Princess Jasmine’s bravery, I love that Aladdin was a poor boy destined for greatness, and I love the genie! If I am honest, however, there are many times I have treated God as if He was my own personal genie.
As we lead our girls, we can all agree that the intentionality behind our prayers matter. However, we have to be careful that our prayers for our girls aren’t just presenting our wants and wishes to God on how He should fix them. Because while He can change them, we are missing something big if we aren’t first asking God to show us His heart for these girls and how He wants us to play a part in their life.
This shift in our prayer life suddenly causes us to see each girl we encounter differently. We don’t just see the things we wish God would fix about her. Instead, we notice her giftings. We see through what she is trying so hard to project. Her smile and laughter gives us insight. We position ourselves in the process of healing and restoration. When we love them like Jesus, they get to see Him through a brand new lens and experience Him like never before.
Positioning yourself to be used by God doesn’t mean you are somehow in control of the outcome, but it opens up your hands, your heart, and your life to be used by Him.
Here are 4 things to help encourage you in your prayers as you change the world one girl at a time:
1. It is not your words that move the hand of God.
It’s easy to pray for other people to change rather than loving them where they are or looking at how our own hearts need to change. I believe that when we let our words reflect the desperation of our hearts God reaches in and our hearts begin to shift. Therefore, we need to beg God to use our words, actions, and lives to be an instrument of hope and change in the lives of our girls.
This act of surrender acknowledges that God does what He wants and wills. This takes the power out of your hands and places God in charge no matter the outcome. Pray with words that are not rooted in religion, or the desire to change their hearts, but instead rooted in the love you have for Jesus and the need for Him to change your own heart.
2. Prayer is essential to your growth
Our desperation for God brings maturity to our faith. We grow when we are dependent fully upon God’s strength and His provision to carry us, mold us, and grow us into who He created us to be as we lead our girls. When you feel as if you have no words to pray, remember that God already knows. Therefore, praise Him and thank Him for the process that He has allowed. God doesn’t allow us to stay where we are, but instead He uses every word spoken and not spoken, every tear cried on an altar, and every word written in a journal to move us and grow us. We must allow our prayers for our girls to stretch us so that we always lead from Him and not from our own strength.
3. What do you truly need?
God isn’t a genie waiting in a cave to be found so that He can grant our next request. However, He is a heavenly father waiting for His children to come to Him in prayer so that He can provide what they need. It’s easy to beg God with open arms for the result we want, but the danger comes when our wants become the very driving force of our communication with God.
If I am honest with myself, I have wanted some pretty shallow material things and I have tucked them in between the words of my prayers. However, those things aren’t what I truly need. The depth of our faith is measured by how much we trust God in providing for our actual needs. And how we respond to an unwanted answer to prayer clearly reveals the condition of our hearts and how much we actually trust our Creator. He tells us in Romans 8:28 that ALL things work together. Philippians 4:19 says, “My God will supply ALL your needs according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Let us remember these verses as we pray and truly believe that God knows all that what we need.
4. Pray as if you are free.
So many times I find myself apologizing to God in my prayers for past sins and living as if I was never forgiven. Working alongside girls with broken pasts and current struggles can quickly trigger my own regrets. There are days where I can feel the weight of my own junk along with a dose of middle school girl drama, and suddenly I find myself walking in defeat.
But, freedom is the very reason Jesus died (Gal. 5:1) and we must boldly enter His presence through prayer. The beauty of freedom is that it blooms out of our surrender. God wants you to freely walk in the fullness of His power and presence. Defeat is not an option when you are choosing to walk in the One who has already won!
Ladies, we get the privilege of walking beside so many girls through the good and messy seasons. Let’s posture our hearts and allow our prayer lives to reflect our daily surrender!
Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Christian Standard Bible®, Copyright © 2017 by Holman Bible Publishers. Used by permission. Christian Standard Bible® and CSB® are federally registered trademarks of Holman Bible Publishers.
Holly Myers is a passionate, energetic, and relatable woman that strives to minister specifically to girls and women. When Holly surrendered to God’s grace, her past ultimately drew her closer to her Creator and allowed her to experience freedom. Because Christ set Holly free from the bondage she was in, she recognized a calling to speak to other girls and women that may share her same story. Holly is passionate about seeing freedom in the lives of every girl and woman.