Every parent knows the sound of their kids yelling out for help. “Mom, I need toilet paper! I can’t find my backpack! Where are my shoes? I need some money!” Some parents can set their clocks by their kids calling out to them for something. And even though the outcome may not be what our kids plan, something always happens when they call out to us.
It makes sense in the same way that God, our heavenly father, is tuned to the sound of our voices when we call out to him and will respond. But if that’s true why is calling out to God so often our last resort? Could it be that we don’t know what’s supposed to happen? Or that we don’t really expect anything to happen?
Whatever your circumstances, something always happens when we call out to God.
We can see how God responds when his people need him by looking at the words some of them wrote about their own experiences in both the Old and New Testament. Here are six things that you can expect to happen when you begin calling out to God in your time of need:
1. God will hear and answer
Sometimes my answer to my kids is yes, and sometimes it is no. How I answer varies on what I believe is best for them, but I always hear and answer. It is the same with God.
Psalm 17:6 – I call on you, my God, for you will answer me…
Psalm 120:1 – I took my troubles to the Lord; I cried out to him, and he answered my prayer.
Isaiah 58:9 – Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.
Lamentations 3:55-57 – But I called on your name, Lord, from deep within the pit. You heard me when I cried…Yes, you came when I called; you told me, “Do not fear.”
2. God will save and rescue you
This is a recurring theme throughout scripture that played out in the lives of many of his followers like Moses, Joseph, David, Esther and Paul. His promise to save us from spiritual death and into abundant life is the foundation and beginning of his saving relationship with us.
Romans 10:13 – (quoting Joel 2:32) For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.
Psalm 50:14-15 – Make thankfulness your sacrifice to God, and keep the vows you made to the Most High. Then call on me when you are in trouble, and I will rescue you…
3. God will draw close to you
Many people walk away from God because they don’t feel him. Our feelings are often liars. The truth is that closeness with God is a direct result of calling out to him in prayer, bringing him our deepest and most transparent thoughts and feelings often. Does God feel distant? Call on him. He will draw close.
Psalm 145:18 – The Lord is close to all who call on him…
4. God will transform you
The way we experience the best life possible in Jesus is when we are consistently being changed into his image. We are made holy, new and pure by calling on him.
1 Corinthians 1:2 – He made you holy by means of Christ Jesus, just as he did for all people everywhere who call on the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, their Lord and ours.
5. God will abundantly bless you
My kids have learned that when they ask for a little I want to give them a lot. I can’t help it. When we position ourselves to be dependent on God his posture is one of abundance. When we lean on him and trust him his desire is to richly bless us – to do good things for us.
Romans 10:12 – For there is no difference between Jew and Gentile—the same Lord is Lord of all and richly blesses all who call on him,
Psalm 86:5 – For you, O Lord, are good and forgiving, abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you.
6. God will reveal things to you
We all need wisdom and guidance at times. We all face big decisions where it would be helpful to know things that we don’t. When we call on God he opens up his resources of wisdom and understanding to us so we can make the best choices every time.
Jeremiah 33:3 – Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.
Calling on the Lord is a fundamental part of a thriving relationship with him. If you make it one of your regular spiritual disciplines you will begin to see God respond in ways you could have only imagined!
Psalm 17:6 – I call on you, my God, for you will answer me… Psalm 120:1 – I took my troubles to the Lord; I cried out to him, and he answered my prayer. Isaiah 58:9 – Then you will call, and the Lord will answer; you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.