Prayer, Supplication and Thanksgiving

By Ruth Bell Graham   •   October 28, 2011

Like an electric shock, the name of someone I loved dearly flashed into my mind at 3 a.m. and jolted me awake. So I lay there praying for the one who was trying hard to run away from God. When it is dark and the imagination runs wild, there are fears that only a mother can understand.

Suddenly the Lord said to me, “Quit studying the problems and start studying the promises.”

So I turned on the light and got out my Bible. The first passage that came to me was Philippians 4:6-7, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (NKJV).

Suddenly I realized the missing ingredient in my prayers had been “with thanksgiving.” So I put down my Bible and spent time worshiping God for who He is and what He is. Even contemplating what little we do comprehend of God dissolves doubts, reinforces faith and restores joy.

I began to thank God for giving me this loved one in the first place. I even thanked Him for the difficult spots that taught me so much.

Do you know what happened? It was as if suddenly someone turned on the lights in my mind and heart, and the little fears and worries, which like mice and cockroaches had been nibbling away in the darkness, suddenly scuttled for cover.

That was when I learned that worship and worry cannot live in the same heart; they are mutually exclusive.

Taken by permission from “It’s My Turn,” by Ruth Bell Graham, ©1982 The Ruth Graham Literary Trust.

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  1. Aloysius Nwuzi says:

    Prayer changes situations from negative to positive. A prayerful person is a fearless person. Thank you Jesus!

  2. Paul Sahadeo says:

    Yes, thanks.

  3. Theresa says:

    I was going through some things with my sons and woke up in the night worrying. I said to God that worry is not from you so please take this from me, and I began to worship and peace entered into the room. Your word, “worship and worry cannot live in the same heart” are so true. Worry doesn’t fix anything; we have to let go and give it to GOD!! Thank you so much for your message. A reminder and a blessing.

  4. Patricia says:

    This reminder brought comfort to my SOUL for my grandson troubles. Thank you.

  5. Mark Taku says:

    Billy Graham and Family
    Our Family wishes you and your Family a Happy Thanksgiving, the Holy Spirit be with you all in this Holiday Season and to touch all this Christmas for the Birth of our Savior JESUS CHRIST.
    The Mark Taku Family

  6. Mavatmi says:

    Worship and worry cannot live in the same heart; how true!

  7. Sonny says:

    This is a wonderful story to remind us that God is in control and we should give Him thanks during the journey.

  8. Jennifer says:

    We can turn out sorrows into joy simply by praising and worshiping! =)