Are Your Hopes, Dreams, and Prayers Big Enough?

Are your Hopes, Dreams, and Prayers Big Enough?  There’s one question we all need to ask to know the answer to thisTweet That

In spending the past few days praying circles (claiming God’s promises) around the dreams God has laid on my heart and has reconfirmed are His calling on my life (click here to read about that), I was feeling pretty good about the size of my prayers.

Each morning this last week, straight out of bed I hit my knees and began my day praying. And I don’t just mean asking for things, I mean circling my sin as well. I’ve spent considerable time asking God to “consume my uncleanliness out of me” Ezekiel 22:15. I don’t tell you all this to brag; I tell you because it’s quite an accomplishment for me.


Prayer CirclesEach morning I have done this, God has made Himself visible in numerous ways. Well, He’s always visible, but I noticed Him considerably more. Whether it was in making my time spent in writing more efficient or making our family time dear and sweet, I recognized so much more how and where God was walking with me through my day.

Then, this past weekend my family and I took a trip up to Hume Lake to serve the Christian Camp there with our church family. On the drive up, I decided to reread The Circle Maker aloud to my husband.

As my husband and I were reflecting, it hit me. My circles aren’t big enough.

Why? Because even though I don’t feel like I can accomplish all the plans God has laid on my heart, they are humanly possible.

The truth is I am capable as a human being of writing a New-York Time’s best selling author. I am capable of building a large platform or sphere of influence to encourage and equip others with. I am humanly capable of fulfilling these hopes, dreams, and prayers of mine.

And, even though I don’t feel like I have that ability or at times I feel like I don’t have anything of value to offer, many people have accomplished this before me. So where’s the glory for God in it all?

God answers prayer for one reason: to bring Himself glory.


Many of my prayers and circles included things that were only possible with God, however, to that I say while it’s a step in the right direction, it still falls short.


The question we should be asking ourselves: What are we praying for that is only possible by GodTweet That


“If you’ve never had a God sized dream that scared you half to death, then you really haven’t come to life. If you’ve never been overwhelmed by the impossibility of your plans, then your God is too small. If your vision isn’t perplexingly impossible, then you need to expand the radiuses of your prayer circles.” -Mark Batterson


So this week I’ve opened up a new circle to lay at God’s feet.


God, what should I be praying for that is so big, it’s can only be accomplished by you? What, when it’s all said in done will bring You the most glory?

Now, there are definitely some of these circles within my prayers already.

  • As I ask God to “enlarge my territory” and expand my influence, I’m asking that He would meet each person on the page right where they are at and speak to them personally. This is not humanly possible.
  • My circles include prayers for my children and family that have to do with forming their hearts and deepest desires around those of Christ. I know this is not humanly possible, because the harder I try to do the job of the Holy Spirit the further I push them away from these things.
  • And, when it comes to the enemy, there is just no way to defeat Him without the blood of Christ. My prayers now include time spent doing battle and claiming the promises around the doubts and fears the enemy likes to use to keep me from moving forward like “The LORD will fight for you, and you only have to be silent” Exodus 14:14 and “Commit your work to the LORD, and your plans will be established” Psalms 32:8.

But I believe God is asking me to open up a circle I’m calling “immeasurably more” based on Eph. 3:20-21. I don’t know what belongs inside that circle yet, but I’m confident that God will reveal it.

When it comes to God and prayer, we need to show the same “shameless audacity” Jesus spoke of in Luke 11. In the end, when our hopes and dreams and prayers are bigger than anything we could ever accomplish, God get’s the glory. And for most of us, isn’t that why we dare to dream in the first place?

We are promised that if we ask anything in His name that aligns with His will, the answer is yes. So what are we waiting for? Tweet That


When we dare to confidently ask for God sized hopes and dreams and circle them with “shameless audacity,” our dreams will come true and His glory will be revealed

What are some things you are currently praying about that are only possible by God? I’d love to know and join you in boldly approaching the throne for these things. And, don’t forget to share this with others, so they too can be encouraged and challenged.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

  • Michelle

    excellent, excellent book! It is amazing what happens when we increase our circles and pray continually for them! Great post.

  • Corie Clark

    I loved that book! I was raised in a home where we always believed for the impossible so this isn’t a new way of thinking for me. Even so, there are times that I forget that I can enlarge my circles and claim more in His name.
    Great post!

    • Shelly Tiffin

      Thanks Corie!

  • Steve Tessler

    What a timely post for me to read. I struggle with this all the time.

    I’m wanting to do a podcast and right now I’m so busy with work I just keep making excuses. If I gave it to God it would happen!!

    • Shelly Tiffin

      That’s a great response. Honestly, I need to be reminded of this all the time. I so easily forget I’m not in this by myself.

  • Pingback: How Do I Explain The Difference Between Praise and Thanks to My Kids?()

  • Pingback: God's Platform Doesn't Always Look Like Michael Hyatt's

  • Ami Adams

    The past couple of days I have been seeing quotes and other articles about God’s plan for our lives and such. And with each one I read, I thought about the book that I stopped working on because I gave up and thought that I couldn’t do it and it was pointless to try. Well, I still think that at times. But this post….this post reminds me that it’s not about me and what I feel. It’s about God and what His plan for me is, and His plans are about His glory. Not about us, like we think. Thank you for sharing this.

    • Shelly Tiffin

      Thanks Ami! To be honest, I write whatever God is dealing with me about and this has been a struggle for me too. Being confident in prayer and the calling He’s laid out is difficult, but I truly believe it’s all about stretching our faith through prayer. I don’t want to keep God in a small box.

  • Donella Crigger

    Wonderful post. God has been speaking to me this year about aligning my priorities with the ones that he has for me. I believe that big things will happen if I seek him more in prayer. :)

    • Shelly Tiffin

      Thanks for reading Donella. It was nice to discover you as well today.

  • Isabel

    This is a great post, Shelly. It is great so experience and “meet” other dreamers that dream so big that it gets scary. When I work with clients and they tell me that they didn’t accomplish their goal so they might as well give up I remind them that their dream most likely wasn’t big enough. When we feel like we go one step forward and two steps backwards its like God telling you “Well, lets try that again but this time we dream even bigger.”. Again, great post :)

    • Shelly Tiffin

      Thanks Isabel! I love this line : When we feel like we go one step forward and two steps backwards its like God telling you “Well, lets try that again but this time we dream even bigger.” That’s so true.