Will these Prayers Work?

Several times a week I get the question…“Will these prayers work?”

Invariably, it’s asked about the 40-day Prayer Challenge for Wives.

And invariably, I cringe and want to say, “nope!”

Let me tell you why…

In the question “will prayers work”, what do you want to happen?

  • “Will this prayer work… to fix my husband?”
  • “If I pray this… will my husband come home to me?”
  • “If I pray that… will my child obey me?”
  • “Are these the prayers that will… make my loved ones accept Jesus?”
  • “When I pray this prayer… will I get that job or position?”

Basically, are we asking… “Is this the prayer that God will answer the way I want? When I want? Because I want?”

We treat prayer like an, “I do, I get” game.

And that is wrong.

The divine communication between our Heavenly Father and ourselves should in no way, ever! be used as a tool to manipulate, bribe, point fingers, brag on other’s wrongs, or gossip superficially.

God sees what is really behind the words we pray.

Praying selfishly or with ulterior motives are disdain against God. It’s basically saying, “I said this now do Your job and give me what I want.”

And that’s just it- all we did was say something.

The heart behind it didn’t match the words and made the words a lie.

God doesn’t answer lies.

He answers pure hearts.

Our prayers have little to do with what gets said, and a lot to do with how our heart is set.

That’s not just a catchy little line. That’s fact.

God hears our heart, not just our words. We hinder our prayers when we come before Him with the wrong attitudes and motives.

It’s okay to bring our frustrations to Him. He still loves me in spite of all the venting I done in front of Him. ?

But it’s not okay to pray from a superficial, disdainful heart.

And maybe that’s not you. You probably have all your praying duck in a row and they all quack “amen” at just the right time. ?

However, I find that, “Wow! I’m the one who needs the fixin’ before I can pray the effectual prayers of a righteous person described in James 5:16.”

The best way to detox our heart attitude when praying is to pray Scripture.

You might find our 30 Spiritual Warfare Prayers a great heart attitude detox.

God’s Word is so sharp it will separate soul and spirit, thoughts[words] and attitudes of the heart (Hebrews 4:12).

In order for us to pray effectual, fervent prayers and still have the right attitude when He doesn’t answer the way we hoped, His Word must become the plumb-line on which we think, pray, speak, and weigh ourselves.

So will my or other written prayers work for you and your situation?


My written prayers alone won’t save, fix, change, or restore anyone or any thing.

That’s God’s job.

However, when you pray prayers that line up with Scripture from a heart … this is key!!!… from a heart that is humble, pure and in right standing with the Lord, you invite His power, love and Holy Spirit to do His saving, fixing, changing, and restoring work in your life, heart, home, marriage, children, etc.

God loves to answer these kinds of prayers because of the heart attitude behind them.

I challenge you with this… (because I have had to stare each of these in face for myself)

Questions to ask yourself about why you pray:
  • What is your heart attitude when you pray for someone?
  • What is your ‘why’ for praying?
  • If you don’t get what you want, did you waste your breath?
  • If your husband doesn’t change, get saved, or come home by the end of this 40-day prayer journey, does that give you an easy out?
  • Is a prayer answered the way you want, your only gauge to whether God’s Word is true and His ways are sovereign?
  • Are you praying as a way to “give God a chance to save this person”? (who do we think we are?!!)
  • If your child doesn’t “turn out well” even though you prayed these 40 prayers over them, are you going to quit loving them through prayer?

Basically… If God doesn’t do what you want… when you want… how you want… because you want… does that make His love and promises register as an error in your life?

Don’t let your heart become hard. I know forgiveness is hard – I kinda stink at it. 

Waiting is hard – I don’t do well with that, either.

And prayer often feels a bit monotonous – I feel that, too.

But the effectual fervent prayer of a righteous person availeth much. (James 5:16)

  1. Get your heart right before God – ask Him to create in you a clean heart. (Psalm 51:10)
  2. Pray without ceasing. (see 1 Thessalonians 5:17 & Luke 18:1)
  3. Trust God to be faithful to you, His faithful one. (see Deuteronomy 7:9, Psalm 18:25, 2 Thessalonians 3:3)

It’s our job to pray. It’s God job to do the fixing, changing, healing, and restoring.

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  1. hope Thomas says:

    This was well written! There is no formula to God and his majesties. Totally a heart thing, when I began praying for my marriage I would always say, “Bless my husband and change me”. I didn’t want to be right but to be guided on being the best wife my husband needs. Changed my life!

    God doesn’t answer lies.

    He answers pure hearts

    That will preach all by itself. Love your resources , may you be confident in walking richly in the blessings set before you.

  2. Julia says:

    I totally agree. When we pray in the right spirit, it changes us…and sometimes God gives us the desires that we bring before Him. But ultimately, He decides, because He knows best! That’s a difficult truth to swallow sometimes, but necessary if we truly want to grow in Him.

    Thanks for sharing, Kaylene.

  3. Robin says:

    I have found myself wandering all the questions above. Prayers will work if you work it. Faith without works is dead. However you must first have a pure relationship with God and be willing to surrender your heart to Him. Let Him search you first. Yes it’s okay to continue to pray. But the Peace that you need comes from God not from your husband, children or anyone else. Once I took my focus off my problems God began to fulfill all my needs! Hallelujah He is faithful and His word will not turn to Him Void.

  4. Vanessa says:

    Your such an amazing mother, wife, teacher, author!! You explain things so well and always put yourself in reality. Thank you so much for being so honest!! I will continue praying for Sam, your children and you.

    • Kaylene Yoder says:

      Thank you so much for your continued prayer support, Vanessa. I appreciate you!

      May the Lord continue to use both you and me to further His kingdom in our little corners. It’s a pleasure serving our Heavenly Father alongside you! ❤

  5. Luanne Stevens says:

    I agree with what your saying. Words are just words without the heart. Why I like to write words down that others use to pray, is that I have no short term memory and a lot of times I have the heart but not the words. Thank you

    • Kaylene Yoder says:

      Writing down prayers and Scriptures has transformed the depth and preciousness of my prayer life. I love that you do the same thing, Luanne. Keep at it! God will always reach us in ways that best help us understand His Word. Some connect with writing it out, some connect best by hearing or reading, and God ministers to each one perfectly. What a good Father!

  6. Frankie Mires says:

    After 55 yrs on this earth of trials, set backs, and learning I have finally grown in knowing what it meant to put GOD FIRST. I always thought it was Husband, kids, self and then God. I just did not get it and was not taught that……..my prayers also reflected that order and though alot of my prayers did get answered; the ones most needed was and is MY relationship in prayer to my God. My efforts of reading scripture, talking with God, listening and strengthening me with HIM. I am a strong Catholic but was missing the point until after my marriage fell apart and two out of three left their faith, my relationship suffered immensely with my Father until I realized my problem in prayer.

    GOD FIRST at all times, SCRIPTURE reading and then just listening. Everything fell into place in life because I was living, listening to our Father in Heaven.

    Prayers really do work, but like you said, YOUR HEART has to be pure, in the right in HIS sight, and we must listen with our HEART when we pray. The words we say can do away with the clutter. God sipps in to cleanse unsure, the nasty, barriers.

    Kaylene, your CHALLENGES gives people chances to clean house and renew their hearts for Holiness. I am one very grateful for your time spent on growing us closer to Our Heavenly Father.

    Thank you

    • Kaylene Yoder says:

      Thank you so much for sharing here, Frankie! It is an honor to serve and commune with our Heavenly Father alongside you. I love how you described that the order of our priorities are often reflected in our prayers. That is very convicting. Thank you for sharing that! ❤

  7. Eileen says:

    Powerful insight, thank you and I love every material of yours. I am very confident that my prayers will be answered. Once we pray trusting Him and patiently waiting on Him as He prepares us, is all we can do. Problem with human nature these days is, we are impatient we just want quick response like two minutes noodles kind of response. It doesn’t work like that, that’s where we miss it. God needs to mold us while we wait and trials will keep coming to derail us but we shouldn’t allow ourselves to be distracted. Take prayer as a gift once you give someone special a gift do you go back and get it let alone monitor how it’s been handled or you will be happy that you gave someone something they loved? Let’s view prayer in that sense. Once your pray forget about it and just be thankful, results will begin to show. Marriage is a gift from God, we need to humble it and always remain prayerful reminding God of His promises. So prayer with scripture, definitely works

  8. Eileen says:

    Kaylene and Sam may God bless your marriage and continue to do the good work you’re doing. You’re saving alot of marriages. Yours will definitely be an overwhelming testimony.

    • Kaylene Yoder says:

      Thank you for your prayer support, Eileen! I appreciate you. Sam & I are doing well; just taking one day at a time, rejoicing in another opportunity to love and serve our Heavenly Father while leaning heavily on grace. We, too, are praying to be a great encourgement to other marriages and families. ❤

  9. Deanna Day Young says:

    Thank you for all of those wonderful words, examples and encouragement. You hit every nail on the head for me. But I think the real thing for me is truly letting go and saying “your will be done” and meaning it. I love that you said we pray and let God do the fixing. He’s amazing. And His ways are better than ours. He has an even better “fix” than anything we can think of. I love to see Him work. But I hate waiting. And I’m in the waiting room now. Just praying….and waiting. Thanks for everything. Praying all is going well with the new journey you are on as well. I continue to pray for you and your husband.

    • Kaylene Yoder says:

      Thank you for your continued prayer support, Deanna. I continue praying for you and your family too, Deanna. ❤ The “waiting room” is no fun, but the joy that we are promised when we remain faithful in the testing, is said to make the sorrows dim and seem as waters gone by. (Job 11:13-19) And so we hope for that, keeping our eyes fixed on Jesus.

  10. sahinah khedoo says:

    Prayer works when you trust and have faith in the things we haven’t seen, my life is a testimony of prayer how prayer help my husband health and Jesus died on the cross for our sins, by those stripes we are heal, I was born as a Muslim I gave my life to Jesus Christ 9 years ago, I may not have money or rich but having Him as my Lord and saviour my life is complete, I praise God to choose me to come into His family, there is no other God than Jesus His name is above all names, how amazing we serve a real God who knows us before we were in the womb of our mother, He knows our future, we just have to ask, nothing is impossible with prayer if we have faith.

    • Kaylene Yoder says:

      Amen!! to all that! Wow! What an insiration your faith is. Thank you for receiving the Lord’s love and sharing your testimony with people around you. You are blessing many people. I pray God will use you mightitly to reach your family and friends. May they see the light and hope of Christ through you. In Jesus’ name! ❤

  11. Elizabeth Ainsworth says:

    This is such a good revelation to sit back and do a heart check with, and keep digging into God’s Word to divide our thoughts. I love your heart behind this and humility, and I’ve been praying for you guys whenever you come to mind since you sent the email.

  12. Tanisha Evans says:

    I love this article! Your response is very well written with love. I feel that this response is the type that displays what God intended Christianity to look like. It doesn’t bash or make one feel bad for asking, but provides a guide toward correction and edifying His followers, to understand the importance, of heart posture and communication with our Lord. The words display compassion, love and truth providing a much needed understanding that prayer is not about getting what we want but it’s about communication with God and allowing Him to do what we ask the way He sees fit. We can trust that no matter what, His response is going to work out for our good because He knows what we need.

  13. Petrina Haludilu says:

    Thank you Kaylene for including me in these questions asked. Personally I think the Bible tells us to pray without ceasing. When I pray I want and need God’s answers to my prayers, but God knows me better. Maybe I am asking something that H knows if Hegive it to me today I will take it and forget about Him afterwards. People have the tendency to forget quickly where they come from, only look where they are today. Look for the Israelites in the desert with Moses and Aaron. They forgotten what happened to them in Egypt and on the Red sea, they even started accusing Moses and God. So I think God is preparing our hearts to be matured enough to receive whatever we are asking for. So let us be humble before Him like Joshua. Let us wait for His time not pushing Him to answer our prayers within our time limit

  14. Vivian says:

    You are very wise and mature, Kaylene! I finally realized that prayers, numbers of prayers, even fasting should not be used like a magic formula to twist God’s arm to give us our desires. Read Isaiah chp 58 about what fasting really entails. It is as you said, Kaylene, heart attitude. I heard that prayer should be 80% praise and 20% requests. Doesn’t God’s word say “He knows what we are to say before we speak it” I love Ps 77:17 His footsteps were not seen—this encourages me that God is always working in the background. After all He never slumbers or sleeps!!!
    Trust! Trust! Trust!

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