3 Principles for Praying Impossible Prayers – Mark 11:19-33

From my reading in Mark 11:19-33 in the One Year New Testament.

 Jesus cursed fig tree for not bearing fruit and his disciples realized that it had miraclously withered. When they pointed it out, Jesus responded with a lesson on prayer. Here are three principles about praying impossible prayers.

1. We can NOT control God with our prayers, but through prayer God’s will can be accomplished, even it if seems impossible.

“Have faith in God. Truly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be done for him. Mark 11:22-23

If God is putting it on your heart to pray for something, pray in faith and don’t doubt! If it is his will, then he will lead his people to pray for it. It is not usually his will to throw a mountain into the sea so that explains why that hasn’t happened often!

When we pray we have access to the God who created the universe and that nothing is impossible to him!

God’s answer to our prayer is not depended on how much faith we have, but who our faith is in.

2. Answers to prayer are NOT based on our ability to believe, but based on God’s willingness to answer. 

Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.  Mark 11:24

True faith does not twist God’s arm into doing something he doesn’t want to. Effective prayer is about discovering what His will is and boldly asking him for that! God is able to answer any prayer, but it must be something that he wants. The Bible knowledge commentary says,

“Jesus made this promise on the recognized premise that petitions must be in harmony with God’s will (cf. 14:36; Matt. 6:9–10; John 14:13–14; 15:7; 16:23–24; 1 John 5:14–15). This enables faith to receive the answers God gives. God is always ready to respond to obedient believers’ prayers, and they can petition Him knowing that no situation or difficulty is impossible for Him.”

In other words answered prayer will align with God’s purposes.

3. Prayer is hindered by unforgiveness and broken relationships.

And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.” Mark 11:25

Powerful prayer is done by people who are in right relationship with God and others. If you have sin in your life or you won’t forgive a friend your prayers will be hindered. Sin drowns out God’s voice in your life and makes it hard to discern what God wants you to pray for.

I want to encourage you to pray for big things, and trust that he has the power to make the impossible possible.

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About David Worcester

I am the founder and director of a campus ministry at San Diego State called Challenge. I am also serving as an ordained elder at Mission Trails Church. I love speaking and writing about college ministry, gospel appointments, and practical ways to live out God’s Word! I am also passionate about: leadership training, learning, missions, church planting, surfing, hiking, sports, photography and traveling (So far I’ve visited 23 countries & all 50 states). I’m married to Jessica Worcester who I fell in love with while doing college ministry together and we have a two year old son named Samuel. I graduated from from the University of Oklahoma (OU) with a degree in Film & Video Studies. And I received my Masters in Theological Studies from Gateway Seminary. I am an ordained minister who loves speaking and writing about practical ways to live out God’s Word in life and ministry.

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