The Bible says that God is an ever-present help in times of need (Psalms 46:1). It means you can always count on God’s help. However, the same Bible also teaches that if you have a desire but don’t ask God for it, you won’t get it. However, you have to know how to ask, or else, you might end up unfruitful in our prayer (James 4:2-3).
So how can you ask God for help?
God wants to help you but you have to know how to ask. First, ask according to His will. God will not answer any prayer that goes against his sovereign will. Secondly, ask in faith because you can’t please him without faith. Lastly, always approach Him with an attitude of gratitude.
Let us take a closer look at each of these three principles below:
Ask according to God’s will
God is sovereign and his will stands no matter what. In Job 42:2, Job reckons that even though God can do all things, his purposes can never be stopped. In other words, the fact that God can do everything doesn’t mean he will. So, when you want his help with something, it is best to start by understanding his will – or at least praying for it.
The Apostle Paul illustrates this when he was being tormented by the messenger of satan and asked God for help in dealing with it. To his surprise, God didn’t deal with the problem even though Paul asked three times for God’s help. Instead of removing the problem, God told Paul that he had given him enough grace for the challenge he was facing (2 Cor. 12:9).
Another example is when Jesus was overwhelmed with the thought of his impending crucifixion. The fact that he knew exactly how he would die didn’t help either. Just hours before his death, he goes into Gethsemane to pray and even considers asking God to “take away the cup.” But Jesus knew the best way to ask his Father for help was to pray for his will.
Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me: nevertheless not my will, but thine be done.” Luke 22:42
A couple of years earlier, Jesus had taught his disciples to pray. And according to the pattern of prayer he gave them (which we refer to as the Lord’s prayer), praying for God’s will should come long before asking god for help (Mathew 6:9).
James says that one of the reasons we do not get answered prayer is because we pray amiss. When you pray against God’s will, you are praying amiss and that means you will not get favorable results. So before you ask God for help, be sure to ask for his will to be done first.
Have faith in God
When asking God for help, it is important to do so while standing on the pedestal of faith. In luke 18, Jesus gives a parable to illustrate the importance of praying in faith. In the parable, a widow who was being oppressed went to seek help from an evil judge. The judge had no regard for justice and he didn’t fear God either. As such, he was not concerned about giving teh woman justice. But the woman kept pestering until the judge eventually caved in and granted the woman her request. Jesus then finishes the parable by asking a rhetorical question;
However, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on the earth?” Luke 18:8
Jesus was drawing a parallel between persistent prayer and faith. When you are praying in faith, you do not give up after asking a couple of times. On the contrary, you keep praying until you hear from God. This is the picture that Isaiah paints in Isahi 62:1-6. God was calling on the intercessors that he has raised for the sake of Jerusalem not to quit praying until they see the prophetic word over Jerusalem fulfilled.
When asking God for help, you must believe that God is an ever-present help and that he wants to help. Once you do, keep on praying until you get an answer.
3. Ask with an attitude of thanksgiving
In Pslams 100, the Psalmist gives the right protocol for approaching God – you enter with thanksgiving. Before asking God for help, take time to reflect on the many blessings God has already sent your way. Meditate on the numerous prayers he had answered for your and your loved ones over the years. This will help you to put on the garment of praise which is exactly what you need if you are to approach his throne with thanksgiving.
In the book of Luke (17:10-19), ten leprous men approach Jesus for help. Jesus instructs them to go present themselves to teh priest. This was in accordance with the law of Moses for any leper that was cleansed. As they are going, they notice teh healing taking place and one of them is so excited that he rushed back to Jesus to offer his gratitude. Jesus is surprised that only one remembered to give thanks and so he turns to the one and says, “Rise and go; your faith has made you well.”
Just like the leper demonstrated, the surest way of getting God’s help is to approach him with an attitude of gratitude. If you are grateful for his finger, you will see his hand. But if you are always full of complaints and negativity, you will block God’s move in your life.
In Matthew 7, Jesus promises that all those who seek will find, those who knock will be let in, and those who ask will receive. However, there are some conditions that you must meet before you can experience God’s help. As we have seen, you must ask according to God’s will, be in faith and do it with an attitude of thanksgiving. If you do these three things, you can be sure of getting God’s help.