The scriptures remind us to pray, even to do so continually. (1 Thess. 5:17). I trust you to implement ‘continually’ as you best discern, but I want to remind you of an equally, perhaps more important necessity, which is to pray with faith. My boots were worn out, so I started wearing my hikers to work in, which promptly destroyed their waterproofing. I have a camping trip planned and need dry feet in the middle of the winter. I prayed about purchasing some new boots, which is not an ordinary purchase. I started looking around, which I considered compatible with prayer. I didn’t find any good deals, (this I freely admit was irrelevant to prayer), nor did I have peace about purchasing any I found, (peace is a factor to consider, as God’s ways lead to peace, Ps. 23). At some point later, I heard, understood, and/or received an awareness, (I use these various terms to describe receipt of spiritual communication, for any who my be uncomfortable with this, just assume I remembered) that if I expected anything from God or by prayer to God, it would need to be received by faith.
Faith is the power behind all things spiritual, you can ask and seek amiss and never receive or find, but with faith the power of God is actuated. Think about Abraham, Moses, Noah, Elijah, and all the prophets and saints who overcame by faith. (Hebrews 11). One sincere act of faith changes everything. Regarding faith scripture says, “Abram believed the Lord, and he credited it to him as righteousness.” (Gen. 15: 6). Faith is believing without seeing or having any certainty beyond God’s word and reliability. So, I ended my search and contemplated where I stood in faith.
In our natural self, it’s easy to give up on faith, in fact, it is not natural to have faith. Faith requires submission, releasing our wants and needs to God’s will. Faith is not seeing, but abandonment of what we think is best in exchange for God’s will to be done. Faith is not unbelief, but the opposite of faith is trusting in ourselves and doing what we think is right. King David illustrated seeking God’s will in battle and clinging to God’s word, even when circumstances seemed to favor what seemed best for him. King Saul illustrated a self-willed approach, doing what he thought was good, even though it was contrary to God’s Word and instruction. David found honor and blessing while Saul was rejected and died a horrible death.
God is gracious and His blessings exceed anything we could expect. So, pray and put your faith in God’s answer; He is faithful and good.