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Confident Closeness

Confident Closeness

by Kevin Twombly on November 02, 2021

Confident Closeness

Scripture encourages us to be free to approach God boldly. Why? Because we have nothing to fear and nothing to be ashamed of, we have the confidence to draw close to God. The author of Hebrews wrote, “let us then approach God‘s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need“.  This attitude of confident closeness is the essence of prayer. It’s the belief that we are welcome in God‘s presence. That He wants us to be with Him, to speak with Him, to depend on Him.

Shame causes us to hide from God, righteousness causes us to seek God.

So often prayer is reduced, both in our minds and in common religious practice, to something formulaic, external, and somber. We treat prayer as a duty. It’s something that pleases God, so we must do it, even though we can hardly stay awake, and secretly we wonder why we’re telling an omniscient God things He already knows.

But that isn’t prayer at all.

Prayer is more about heart than words, it’s more about motive than eloquence, and it’s more about love than duty. Prayer should not be fearful but rather confident, because we are speaking with the God who chose us, saved us, and loves us unconditionally. Prayer should not be a ritual but rather a spontaneous expression of our heart. Prayer should not be boring or repetitive but rather alive, authentic, and fresh.

There may be moments when you spend an extended amount of time in prayer, but those are the exception. Most prayers are short, sweet, and to the point. The most famous prayer in the Bible, called the Lord’s Prayer because it was prayed by Jesus Himself, is a mere 10 lines long. (Matt 6:9-13) Prayer is less about form and more about motivation and content. You aren’t fooling God anyway – He knows exactly what’s in your heart and on your mind, and that’s what He cares about.

You can pray at a traffic light. 

You can pray in line at the grocery store. 

You can pray for a parking space in the rain. 

You can pray for someone who randomly popped into your mind. 

You can pray before a job interview. 

You can pray during a job interview, but probably don’t do it out loud… 

You can pray for someone who just expressed a need or fear – often it’s better than giving advice anyway. 

You can pray when you’re trying to fall asleep at night and your mind won’t slow down. 

You can pray when the world seems out of control, or rather when your world seems out of control. 

You can pray for a spouse, and you can pray to be a better spouse. 

You can pray with gratitude when you’re happy. 

You can pray with anger when life has betrayed you. 

You can pray with grief when tragedy strikes. 

You can pray when you don’t even know what to pray or how to pray, just by surrendering to God‘s will.

There are 1 million reasons and times to pray. Just don’t pray to impress God or to manipulate Him or because you’re scared that He’s mad at you or because you think you deserve something. Those are self-focused approaches that ultimately undermine the very nature of prayer. 

Confident closeness is less about getting what you want from God and more about simply wanting God. It’s about trusting in Him and surrendering to Him, knowing that He responds to your needs and desires because He loves you.

In what ways do you need to trust God more with your prayers?

How have you seen God respond through your prayers?

Knowing that God invites you to come to Him, does that help you approach with confidence?

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