Prayers for When You Feel Hopeless

Prayers for When You Feel Hopeless

house Annie Hutchison Mar 19, 2024

Have you ever felt hopeless? That your circumstances or relationships will never improve and that God has abandoned you?

I know that I have. Sometimes I am called to walk through painful seasons, where the trials just keep crashing down on me, and God feels silent. In these seasons, it’s very easy to hear the lies that Satan is screaming at me.

“God doesn’t love you.” “God is withholding goodness from you.” “God isn’t worthy of your worship, just look at the pain he is allowing in your life”

They say a lie repeated often enough begins to sound true. These lies have sometimes looked like the truth in my life. When a lot of bad things hit my family and they were big, life and death, kind of trials that only God could control, it’s easy to look at my circumstances and believe these lies are true.

I find myself praying:

“God where are you?”

“God I need you!”

“God I need break-through!”

“God, do you see me? Do you care? Are you even there?”

“Why are you withholding goodness from me?”

I don’t know about you, but I’m tired of praying these prayers when I feel abandoned and hopeless. I’m tired of doubting God’s word and feeling utterly discouraged when my desperate attempts at reaching out for God don’t seem to be working.

I need solutions and answers from heaven. I cannot just will-power my way to being a more hopeful Christian. I need the power of the Holy Spirit.

Purpose of Prayer

Sometimes, it’s helpful to remember, or to learn, what the purpose of prayer is. Prayer is relational and is a time when we can meet with God, but I love how Chuck Smith explains it. He says, “Prayer is the instrument by which we cooperate with God in the accomplishing of His will upon the earth.”

See, I often get this twisted. I tend to see prayer as a time when I take my list to God and expect him to dole out blessings for myself, my family, and my friends. But this isn’t the purpose of prayer. The purpose of prayer is to bring my list to God, my needs, my aches, my complaints, and my desires, and ask God to help me see them through his perspective. It is a time when I am meant to bring all that I am and want to be, and surrender it to God’s will for my life.

Hope Filled Prayers

Romans 8:24-25 says, “Hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.”

I am hoping for a world free from the pain of sin, a world no longer plagued by death and destruction. So many aspects of life are marred by the blight of sin, and they are so broken that they look hopeless. When I look at these hopeless situations and then place all of my hope in the God of the impossible, I find rest for my weary soul.

So my prayer becomes, “God help me to hope in what I cannot see. Help me to set my hope in you alone because everything else will fail me. Lord, help me to wait for you with patience.”

When I pray, “God of Hope, please fill me with all joy and peace because I trust in you, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit, your hope will abound in me.”

I pray according to God’s word (Romans 15:13), I pray in alignment with God’s heart, and I know this prayer will not fail to bless my weary heart.

James 1:2-4 tells us that trials and tribulations lead to our character being perfect and lacking nothing.

Life is full of hardships. But those who follow Christ have the great comfort of knowing that even when things look dark, like loss, uncertainty, pain and hardship, God still delights in us. He delights in seeing the beauty being worked out in your soul, and he delights in giving you good gifts.

I wish the good gifts God wanted to give me were financial freedom, perfect health, a flat stomach, and no cellulite. But God cares for the inner person so much more than the outer. And he knows that I would never grow my roots deeper if there wasn’t a season of drought.

I love how God explains the beauty and purpose of trials in Jeremiah 17: 7-10.

“Blessed is the man who trusts in the LORD,

whose trust is the LORD.

He is like a tree planted by water,

that sends out its roots by the stream,

and does not fear when heat comes,

for its leaves remain green,

and is not anxious in the year of drought,

for it does not cease to bear fruit.”

The heart is deceitful above all things,

and desperately sick;

who can understand it?

“I the LORD search the heart

and test the mind,

to give every man according to his ways,

according to the fruit of his deeds.”

When I keep my trust securely in the Lord, I will be able to endure all manner of hardships and still bear fruit! These trials are a way for God to heal me from my sick and deceitful heart. I would never know how to abide in his presence if I didn’t have seasons of hardship driving me to my knees in prayer.

The right question during trials and drought isn’t, “God do you see me? Or God why are you allowing this?”

The question I should really be asking is, “God are you worthy?”

If where I am is painful, if it’s costing me more than I can spare, if it is making me feel as though I am coming undone, then the only question that matters is, “Is God worthy of my surrender and obedience?”

Even if God is allowing all of these hardships in my life, do I find him worthy?

I have wanted to walk away from my calling because the cost of my obedience has been steep. It has cost me more than I thought my heart could take. But in the end, I know I can never stop. You see, Jesus took all my sins and died my death so that I could spend eternity in heaven rather than eternal torment.

So even if obedience hurts, even if it costs me all that I hold dear or even my very life, I know with certainty that God is worthy of it all.

Rather than doubting if God loves me, here is my new prayer for when I feel hopeless about my life circumstances or relationships.

“Father, you are Lord over all. There is nothing too difficult or impossible for you. But I am weak and in desperate need of your Holy Spirit to fill me up today and comfort me in my affliction. Please heal my heart, and allow me to be full of hope and a woman of steadfast character, so that I may be lacking nothing. Lord, I feel weary of waiting for change today. Please heal my languishing spirit and let me rise up on wings like eagles as I wait for you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.”

Prayers for When You Feel Hopeless