lara casey nothing is impossiblePraying is a funny thing at first.  You may feel like you are having a conversation with the air or talking to yourself when you begin.  You may get nervous and have no idea what to say.  Know that He will help you.  In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express. (Romans 8:26 NIV) If you have never prayed in your life, welcome : )  If you’ve been praying for decades and you just feel lost, you’re in the right place, too.  If you feel like you just don’t know how to pray, I feel you sister.

Here’s the thing: it takes two to tango.  You are not alone when you pray.  When you pray, you are entering into a conversation, not a one-sided monologue.  Prayer is literally communion with God.  Communion means sharing thoughts, emotions, feelings or something in common.  

If you’ve never prayed before or your prayers have gotten stale over the years, talking to God can feel like an awkward first date.  You don’t know what to say, but you really want to impress your date and get to know them.  God is pretty much the best date ever.  It may take time and lots more dates, but there is something to be said for simply spending time with someone.  The more time you spend with them, whether you share many words or just a few, the closer you become just by being in each other’s presence.  Give God a chance.  Give Him your thoughts.  Let the relationship grow over time.  The very best things in life come with time.  Come near to God and he will come near to you. (James 4:8 NIV)

God is literally the only person you can tell everything to who will love you no matter what.  When you tell Him your heart and your faults and your challenges, He will guide you in what to do next.  His “answers” to you may not be as loud as trumpets and they may not come right away, but they will come.  He hears our prayers that are aligned with His heart. When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures. (James 4:3 NIV)

Prayer changes things.  I say this because I have seen it change everything in my life a thousand times over.  Not by my own effort, but by His grace when I pray.  When I pray, I let it all go so He can show me what to do.  When I pray, sometimes His “answers” come in the form of good thoughts.  He brings thoughts to my mind of comforting verses or people I should help or friends I should reach out to.   When I pray, I don’t use “perfect” words, just truthful words.  I don’t say what sounds good; I say what’s there.  The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. (Psalm 145:18 NIV) When I pray, God helps me get out of my narrow focus on my own worries and He helps me see the bigger picture.  When I pray, He gives me peace.  You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. (Isaiah 26:3 ESV)

The Bible talks a lot about prayer.  Meaningful prayer.  Truthful prayer.  Constant prayer:  Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. (1 Thess 5:16-18 ESV)  Prayer coupled with thanksgiving: Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. (Philippians 4:6 NIV) 

For me, the hardest thing about praying is putting the train brakes of my life on and being STILL to pray.  I am always so grateful when I do, though.

Note to self and everyone ever:  Be still and know that He is God.

Be still today and talk to Him.  Give Him all of your worries.  Tell Him everything.

Be still today and listen.

Be still and just ask.

Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened. (Matthew 7:7-8)

Be still and know that He is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine. When we listen to Him and follow Him and trust in Him, we will see Him blow our expectations completely. out. of. the. water.

And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him. (1 John 5:14-16 ESV)

Sometimes my own prayers are as simple as, “help me know what to say, Lord.  Please help me do the right thing.”  Sometimes my prayers are long conversations where I pour my heart out.  Sometimes I just say, “thank you.”  Sometimes I say my prayers out loud, sometimes I sing them, sometimes I write them (I love this little notebook from my friend Val and these prayer sheets we have in our kitchen), sometimes I get on my knees and sometimes I get so excited, I dance in the living room and just say, “thank you, Lord!”

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Print above from my shop.

What have you learned through prayer or been challenged by in praying?  What do you need prayer for that I can lift up for you?  Will you all help me pray for any requests below, too?  He is always listening.  He can make the impossible possible!

P.S. We launched our magazine today : )  Read the whole story and see our new cover here!

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  1. Sarah S

    Lara, I wholeheartedly love this post. I’ve been praying every morning when my dad walks behind closed doors to receive his radiation treatment. I pray for strength when I feel the tears welling up multiple times through the day. I pray for my friends and family who are each enduring their own hardships. I pray with thankfulness deep down in my heart for all of the things that I take for granted day in and day out for I am blessed beyond measure. Prayer heals my soul because I know he is listening, that he cares and he has a plan. Thank you for sharing.

  2. Mollie Landers

    Thank you thank you thank you for posting about this today, Lara! My mind has been SO busy lately, racing with thoughts about all sorts of stresses in my life — singleness, my next steps career wise (should I go to law school? should I NOT go to law school? Should I move closer to home? Should I stay where I am?), and I get so caught up in it that I simply forget to just lay it all down at the Lord’s feet. Instead of asking the one who created me and knows the inner fiber of my being, I look for answers and signs elsewhere. I think I needed this reminder to just pray.

    • Bobbie

      Mollie: I prayed for you about all you have listed. . And as a 10 year attorney I am willing to speak more if you would like to talk more about law school.

    • Mollie Landers

      Thanks so much, Bobbie! And I would love to talk about law school — I’m [email protected] 🙂

  3. Jillian

    Lara,
    I could use prayers for circumstances in my life, that are calling me to make a big decision. I don’t know what God wants me to do and I want so badly for my emotions not to cloud my trust in him.

    Thank you for your post. It is bringing peace to my heart.

    Hugs,
    Jillian

  4. Jenna Beach

    I am amazed how your posts have been reflecting the very thing I have been studying in my bible study or have talked about with friends. Today’s study was on prayer 🙂

    I’ve learned with praying that I can’t do or not do it based off my emotions. There are a lot of times I don’t feel like praying. In the moment of frustration, prayer isn’t always the first thing I want to do. I am growing in this area and learning that Prayer is my ammunition against the enemy. It not only guides me, but it keeps the enemy from attacking me and guiding me to believing lies vs truth.

    Right now, I am searching and praying to figure out the root of why I tend to try to control things. God has revealed to me things from childhood that make sense, but I haven’t been able to connect it all and see the whole picture yet. I am excited to break free from this bondage because it will help me to be a better wife, mother, and friend. I need to allow my husband to lead, empower Ella to do things on her own, and be still and listen more in all relationships in life.

  5. Bobbie

    Prayer Request for restoration in my marriage. We are both Christians, but my husband suddenly told me he wants a divorce and he is not willing to talk to our pastor or try to work on our marriage. however, when I see him (which is rarely) he cries and says he’ll think about it some more. I believe God is working to soften his heart. please join me in prayer for this, for him to be drawn back to Jesus and our marriage and to be drawn away for the other woman (if there is one). . Thank you in advance.

    • Lara

      I am so sorry you are going though this, Bobbie! Ari and I almost ended our marriage so many times, but God is faithful and He can make the impossible possible. Our marriage being restored is why I first wrote this handwriting piece above. I am praying so much for you!

    • Sara

      I prayed for your and your husband, Bobbie. {{{HUGS}}}

  6. Lauren

    What a great prayer journal! I hope someday you have a Be Still gold foil print. I’d love a small one to put on my bedside table – just saying’ 😉 I love the verses: “The Lord will fight for you, you need only to be still” and “Be still and know that I am God” . They are so comforting.

    Prayers for my parents and inlaws would be much appreciated. This has been a hard year for them. What do you need prayers for?

  7. BH

    Here’s a reality check…. You cried “a lot” because your car was ruined in an accident and you will have to get a new one. No one was injured, you have insurance, and both you and your husband have good jobs to cover any shortfall the insurance doesn’t cover. I’m a VERY sentimental person, but that is crazy. YOU, thank God, are fine. YOU have the resources to purchase another car. You life sounds so good that you look for things to get upset about instead of realizing how truly lucky you are. GROW UP.

    • Lara

      You are right. We have jobs and insurance. But I don’t feel more blessed because of that. I know that there are many who have much less than us who are truly the blessed ones as God is their everything. I struggle with that a lot. Making Him my everything and treating what I have as not mine but just what He has given me to give to others. I cried because I’m weak and human and sometimes things carry sentimental value to me – memories that shaped my heart. I share a lot online, but just like most others, there are still feelings and pain and daily battles I don’t share because they are private. I try to keep that in mind with others too. You never know the battles others are facing. The accident was scary for me as I’ve never experienced anything like that. But I am so grateful I am physically unharmed. Thank you for your thoughts here. I’m grateful you wrote.

  8. Tiffany

    I am in the second year of running a new business and had a very rough year last year (our first year). I only made it through last year because of my prayer life! The key for me was when I learned to make time for listening during my prayer time. God has been completely faithful as I learned to seek and follow Him! Your posts are encouraging and refreshing reminders that I am not the only one trusting God for the success of my business and family. I am blessed every time I read a post:)

  9. annie

    I love this post, Lara.

    Prayer changes things, I think, because ultimately it changes us. Whether we kneel in praise or petition, we acknowledge by the act of prayer that we need God to intercede and provide for us in a way we are fundamentally unable.

    Prayer is something I still don’t understand and certainly don’t do often enough, but I’m so thankful God in His grace and sacrifice provided this way for us to speak with Him anytime the Spirit moves us.

  10. Ashley Flores

    I read this after noticing from my tending list that I prayed everyday this week, but I didn’t journal. This may not seem like a big deal to some, but since I know this is the chosen way God communicates with me in this season, I know that it was neglected simply because I was “too busy” with work this week. So I read my devotions, prayed quietly and then started the hustle of my day. This isn’t always a bad thing, but as you wrote and referenced, it’s because my motive was wrong. I was just too busy to journal. I need to make sure this doesn’t happen again this week.

    Prayer Request: I am in the 8th month of my pregnancy and the reality of my little princess coming soon is hitting me like a ton of bricks. Please pray that our birthing classes go well, and that God removes any stress and fear about the BIG DAY! Thanks, ladies!

  11. Kelly

    Thank you for this wonderful post, Lara. I find such inspiration from each and every one of your posts. The subject of prayer could not have come at a better time for me, I am so thankful that you share everything you do.

  12. Jen K.

    This is a great post – thank you so much for always sharing and putting yourself in a vulnerable spot because you encourage me and inspire me. I grew up going to church but now have no church and no Christian fellowship (except wonderful people online 🙂 My prayer is that I would find a good church for my little family and have the courage to join a group to build relationships with other Christians.

  13. Pamela

    Thank you Lara. You have spoke to my heart today. And I truly believe that finding your site has been an answer to my prayers actually.
    As a mom to four, with only my son left at home, I have been struggling with who I am… other than a mom. I have managed to raise three amazing daughters, one artist and two nursing students, yet I don’t know how to fulfill my own dreams. We just moved to Austin, Texas for my husband’s job so I am praying that God will bring people into my life who can guide me as to where I am suppose to be.- and where I can bless others. I wish I had been as brave as you, and many young creatives, and taken a leap of faith to start something like your amazing business. I want to LOVE what I do as much as I love being a wife and mom. After reading about you and your staff on the Everygirl Bog prayed that someone like you will come into my life. You all are so blessed to work in such a lovely environment and in such an awesome industry that embraces LOVE.
    I know God brought us from CA to TX for a reason. Believe me it was never on our radar! I know he has bigger dreams for us than we can possibly imagine. And I pray for the patience for him to show me what direction I need to be headed in. I pray that I will have the faith and the courage to find a way to do what I love. And I pray for the patience to wait until God feels it is the right time.
    Thank you for acknowledging that it’s okay to pray for not only well being for ourselves and our family but also for our DREAMS!

    • Mary

      Pamela! I am praying for you. I am just recently going through the same thing. Texas is my home state and I hope you love your time there. Please let me know if you have any questions about fun things to explore 🙂 [email protected]

  14. Sara

    I really love this post. Your passion for prayer really comes through, and I remember so vividly feeling this too. It was a long time ago, but I remember it. I really want it back, but just like you said, the train brakes of life! I would love to hear how you get away to pray… I had my laundry room in my head the entire time reading this! Maybe I’ll start my dates with God there, in the mornings! Please pray that I can find the time and have the commitment to doing just that. Thank you!

  15. Caitlin @ The Siren's Tale

    I love this post and it really makes me think. Sometimes I feel so alone in prayer. I’m not sure if I’m “doing it right” and wonder if my prayers are meaningless in compared to others. But I still always feel a strong need to pray – whether a ‘thank you’, ‘please guide me’, or ‘give me the strength’. Like you, sometimes these are long winded conversations where I pour my heart out to the world. I need to start praying more frequently because I’ve felt tired, troubled, and listless lately. This post was just what I needed today 🙂 Thank you!

  16. Charity

    This post reminded me of so many of my own prayer-times that are interrupted because they weren’t necessarily planned or thought out. While we can pray on-the-go I find it so much more meaningful when I take time to consciously converse with the Lord! Thank you for the amazing reminders of the power of prayer!

  17. Shawn Gray

    This was such a wonderful and inspiring post. Thank you for sharing so much of yourself in your writings. We are listening. :o)

  18. Mandy

    I had my first child eight weeks ago. It has been a hard, glorious, scary and love filled eight weeks. As time passes and I get closer to the end of my maternity leave I continue to feel a pull to something , but I don’t know what. I am a career woman , I love people and creative energy all of which my job offers me. Now, when I think about my old pre-baby life something seems small about it, unfulfilling. This is the first time in years I lack clarity and an filled with an enormouse amount of uncertainty, please pray I revive direction and the clarity I seek. Whatever is next needs to be time well spent , time that fills me up and justifys time away from my little love, and only God knows what that is. Pray that he lets me in on his plan. Thank you

  19. Caterina

    I just found your blog today..and instagram thanks to Emily Ley.. 🙂 and wow did I need it. I feel so adrift lately. I have wonderful people in my life, but I am so tired. I need to find more time for God and less time for complaining. I am in nursing school and for this past semester working part time in a stressful Doctor’s office. Stressful due to coworkers and worry. I pray and hope I don’t pass that on to others as I go along. But I think I may. Ready for a new semester full of school, no work and God, family and friends. Just trying to make it through. These are times I miss my Mum even more than ever. Her voice would calm every thing in my head. Goals are hard. But for now, thanks to wonderful posts like these, I will make one : Talk to God tomorrow. No excuses. Thank you … for putting your all into your blog posts… 🙂 xo Caterina

  20. sherry

    Thank you for posting this site i came upon it looking for a place to pray and in need of prayer from others ..My heart troubled so much on my mind i woryy about how to make it for our family when we get low of money just to put food on the table and our needs ,i dont want fancy jewells or cars .i all ways lived on faith that i no God make a way .still believe it .but lately the way this world is and my kids grownup more the needs get tougher .thats not all thats troublin me i have a friend who is nagging me hindering me i love her but she gets bitter at times to demanding hatefull but yet talks about bible verses and telling me i am not christain cause i dont think like her its more to the story but i can write all day plese help me just whisper a prayer with me for me and my family and our health to .Thank you !

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  22. linden

    Thank you!

  23. Ani

    Absolutely beautiful.

  24. Jennifer

    Please pray for the restoration of my marriage. My husband left almost 5 months ago and will not speak to me or see me. We have five children, two of which are in college and three are home with me. I would appreciate your prayers more than you know.Thank you!

    • Lara

      Jennifer, I’m so sorry you are experiencing this. The Lord can do miraculous things and I’m praying for you to be strengthened through it all. Thank you for asking me to pray for you—it’s my honor.