I had just finished preaching on prayer and was approached by a Sunday school teacher from the congregation. She had a great story for me. Knowing that it was a weekend focused on prayer for their church, she had taught her group of 6-year-olds about prayer that morning. When she finished, she invited them to come pray at a little altar she had set up.

She was listening to them pray when she was surprised to hear one little boy reciting the alphabet. The boy next to him leaned over and asked him why he was saying his abc’s. The first little boy answered, “I don’t really know what to say, so I thought I’d just give God the letters and let Him make up the words.”

It’s a cute story, but more I thought about, the more profound it became. Lots of times I find myself in prayer situations like that little boy, just not knowing how I should pray. To be honest, I’ve never been quite so clever as the child who recited the alphabet, but I believe he was on to something good and biblical. Romans 8:26 tells us that when we don’t know how to pray, the Holy Spirit helps us. We don’t always need to have the right words. We don’t really even have to give God the alphabet. As we bring situations before the Lord who knows our hearts and the situation better than we do, we can have confidence in the Lord who promises to hear our prayers even before we call out.

That assurance gives me peace as I pray. I don’t have to always have the right words. I don’t even have to ask the right things. I just want to have the Lord step in and do what He desires and what brings Him glory and advances His kingdom. After all, when I pray, it’s ultimately up to Him as to how and when He answers my prayer.

Read other articles on revival from Dave. “A Biblical Model for Revival Praying” is one of his most popular.

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