We each struggle with our identity based on multiple perspectives. There is the person we present to the outside world, the person the world perceives us to be, and the person we truly are. These identities matter in our prayer life because how we see ourselves affects the tone and focus of our prayers. We approach the Lord based on how we see ourselves. Guilt, shame, unworthiness, regret, unforgiveness, cynicism, frustration, and fear can cloud our spiritual mirrors.
Unfortunately, we rarely consider our most important identity – how the Lord sees us. With man, for a variety of reasons, we often present a carefully-constructed facade that conceals our true feelings. With God, there is no need to be less than completely honest. Prayer is a conversation with our Creator. When we go before the Lord in prayer, we must drop the pretense and be honest about our feelings, frustrations, and concerns. We must acknowledge challenging areas of our lives in order to invite the Lord’s intervention. It is impossible to fix something that we are unwilling to admit is broken.
There is no reason to hide the issues of our heart from The One who created us. He knows anyway! Jeremiah 1:5 says “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” God knows our hearts and our thoughts. Nothing is hidden from God. Psalm 139:12 says “even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.” Hebrews 4:13 tells us that “Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of him to whom we must give account.”
It hardly makes natural sense to go before an all-powerful God, outlining our failures, flaws, and feelings. It sounds like a recipe for disaster, when in fact it is a formula for victory. The reason we can go before God, despite our shortcomings and imperfections, is because of how He views us!
We are God’s masterful creation! Ephesian 2:10 says “For we are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago. The Lord delights in us and sings over us! Zephaniah 3:17 says “The LORD your God is with you, the Mighty Warrior who saves. He will take great delight in you; in his love he will no longer rebuke you, but will rejoice over you with singing.”
Isn’t it easier to ask something from someone who you know is loving, accepting, warm, and receptive toward you? Each time we pray, we can do so with confidence knowing that God loves us. We can never escape his presence. He knows us intimately and wants us to trust him wholeheartedly. In those areas where we struggle, he wants us to confess those struggles, to point out those places of brokenness so that he can repair and restore them. The more we trust him, the better we can operate according to our eternal Kingdom Identity instead of other temporary views. Philippians 1:16 says “being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”