by Rick Warren — February 7, 2021
From When You’re Hoping for a Miracle
“Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed.”
James 5:16 (NIV)
First, make sure your heart is clean from sin. Holding on to unconfessed sin will always hinder your prayers for healing. That’s why James says, “Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed” (James 5:16 NIV). You’re never going to be sinless, but you can sin less. Confessing your sin is the first step in asking God for healing. When you confess, it’s like you’re cleaned inside out.
Second, be specific when you ask for healing. Too many people are afraid to put God in a box, so they just say, “Lord, be with this sick person, show them your love, and help them to know you’re with them.” But how are you going to recognize God’s provision when you don’t ask him for anything specific? Name the thing you are asking God for—not because he needs to know the details but because he wants you to see how he works in those details.
Finally, ask in faith. James 1:6 says, “But when you pray, you must believe and not doubt at all. Whoever doubts is like a wave in the sea that is driven and blown about by the wind” (GNT).
Pray with the expectation, trusting God will answer your prayers in his time and his way. The person you’re praying for may never be healed in this life. But you can still pray for healing—without doubt and in faith—because you know God never stops working out his purposes. He hears you, and he cares about the person you’re praying for or about the sickness that may be burdening you.
Get your heart right with God. Confess your sin. Ask him for the specific thing you want him to do for you and others. Then watch how he works.
It will be beyond anything you can imagine!