Seeing God Rightly: Empowered in Prayer
by Fia Curley
We all hear the statistics.
The number of children growing up in homes without fathers is staggering. And the impact is all too apparent in the areas of health, finance, and even education.
However, growing up without a father in the home, or with a father who is emotionally absent, can also have spiritual consequences.
In a survey on our IHOPKC Facebook page, several of our followers expressed feelings of unworthiness regarding God’s love and His grace toward them because of their actions and views of their earthly father. Many wrongly see God as an angry taskmaster forcing us to endure conversation (prayer) with Him to prove our devotion.
However, the right (and biblical) view of God is one of a tender Father and passionate Bridegroom. Our highest calling in life is our fellowship with God; therefore, cultivating a right view of God is key to developing a life of prayer and intimacy with Him.
As we grow in knowing God and develop a right view of who He is and how much He loves us, we will be energized in our spirit to seek Him confidently with all of our heart.
Encountering the father heart of God is so important for all who desire to grow in prayer. Our heart comes alive when we realize that the heart of the Father is filled with tender mercy toward us.
Jesus prayed for us that we might know that the Father loves us as He loves Jesus, thus giving us great worth: “. . . that the world may know that You . . . have loved them as You have loved Me” (John 17:23).
So we can be assured that God enjoys us, even in our weakness. He says so repeatedly in His Word; for example:
He also brought me out into a broad place; He delivered me because He delighted in me. (Psalm 18:19; c.f. Psalm 35)
In His kindness, God calls us to pray so that we connect with His heart in deep and loving partnership. We do this by the power of the indwelling Holy Spirit and the blood of Jesus that was shed for us. We pray very differently when our spirit is confident before God, knowing that He enjoys us and that He is gentle with us when we repent.
Similarly, understanding Jesus as our Bridegroom and walking in our identity as part of His cherished Bride equips us to have a vibrant prayer life.
For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as the Lord does the church. For we are members of His body, of His flesh and of His bones. (Ephesians 5:29–30)
As children of Almighty God, we are joint heirs with Christ (Romans 8:17), who will reign on His glorious throne (Revelation 3:21). As His Bride, we are positioned to experience God’s heart and affections.
When we have the right view of God, we’re more likely to pray with the expectation of experiencing His goodness and receiving answers to prayers that are prayed in accordance with His will.
And it is through the Word that our minds are renewed so that we begin to see God as He is in truth, rather than through the filter of our own experience or the enemy’s lies. As we say what God says in His Word, it marks us and changes us; this process progressively renews our minds, as the Spirit and God’s Word, which is living and powerful (Hebrews 4:12), illuminate our mind and tenderize our heart, empowering us to say and believe the truth about God.
Come declare truth with tens of thousands of believers this December in Kansas City during Onething 2017. Through moments of corporate worship, biblical teaching, and personalized ministry time, encounter the heart and nature of our loving God who delights in revealing His nature to His children and drawing us into an ongoing conversation with Himself.
Fia Curley served on the NightWatch at IHOPKC for many years, participating in prayer, worship, and intercession from midnight to 6am. Currently attending college in New York, she enjoys blending her passion for prayer, worship, and journalism as she labors with the Lord to see His goodness revealed to families, government leaders, and immigrants from non-Christian nations.