What Knight Rider Taught Me About Prayer That Oral Roberts Never Could

At this moment in time–and really, at any moment in time–it’s easy to look around and see all the problems that are present. Do you know what is simultaneously present, though–and invisible? POSSIBILITIES.

So, let’s talk about problems, possibilities, and prayer. To start, though, you’re going to need the back story on the video above…

When I was 7 years old, I had heard from Oral Roberts that if you ask and you believe, then you shall receive. Those are powerful words and I took them to heart.

You can ask for anything?!!

My favorite show at the time was Knight Rider. I loved tuning in to see Michael Knight come to the rescue of the underdog. What I really loved, though, was his car. KITT!

Can you imagine, a car with all those buttons and screens, that talks to you, that can drive itself?! (Remember, this was 1984. Were you watching, Elon Musk?)

Well, when I heard you can ask for anything and receive it, all I could think about was how cool it would be for Knight Rider to show up at my house. Keep in mind, I lived three miles down a dirt road in rural Missouri, not in Burbank, California.

But, there was no fine print on this “ask, believe, and receive” thing, so…

I prayed with all my might one Friday night, and then on Saturday morning, I got up and went outside, knowing this was going to be the best day of my life. I knew that any minute that shiny black car with that red light on the front was going to come around the corner. Oh, the anticipation!!!

I paced back and forth in my front yard that day, but eventually, I realized Knight Rider wasn’t coming. I was crushed. For years, I thought back on that experience–because Knight Rider wasn’t the last thing I would pray for that didn’t come as requested.

I never lost faith, I just realized that there was a missing link somewhere. Something about this formula was off. Had to be.

Fast forward 35 years.

There I stood, in Los Angeles, staring at the car I had prayed for as a little kid. It was sitting in a guy’s driveway–a replica, mind you, but, I mean, come on, at this point I knew there was no “real” KITT in the first place! The 7-year-old in me had waited a long time for this.

It was only mine for a day, but we had a good time driving around LA together. I even got to make a few other guys’ dreams come true in the process–turning on the red scanner for a teen on the freeway, letting guys at the gas station hear KITT’s greeting when you start it up.

Afterward, it made me think:

What if… my prayer was answered all those years ago, but I just had to rise up to the time and place where I could step into it?

I think prayer is often misunderstood as some kind of magic trick, like the answer should just come–“poof!”–out of thin air.

There is a story in the Bible of a man who was crippled and couldn’t walk. The story says he had been that way for 38 years. Jesus came up and asked him, “Do you want to be healed?” The man answered with some excuse about there being no one to help him. You know what Jesus said? “Pick up your mat and walk!”

We always have a role to play in our own healing and deliverance. Exactly what that looks like is different in every situation, but there is no magic in prayer – at least, not in the words themselves. What we speak – audibly or not – is simply thought and intention. It’s what we do next that allows the true magic to be unleashed…

Here are three key elements I’ve found helpful, if you want to “power up” your prayer life (or your manifesting capabilities, if you prefer):

1. ALIGN

If you pray and then go right back to being in your same state – fear, anxiety, sadness, anger, etc. – then you’re still in the past, where whatever happened, happened. If we believe in prayer, then our aim should be to embody now what we’ve asked for. Think of it as tending to the soil after the seed has been planted. If you knew the prayer was already answered, what would you feel in your body? Confidence? Wholeness? Excitement? Gratitude? Can you cultivate those feelings now? The feeling is important. It changes your body chemistry, and it changes your energetic vibration.

2. ACT

What would you do right now if you knew the prayer was already answered? You wouldn’t be running around in fear, right? You wouldn’t be chasing something that’s missing–because if you believe your prayer has been answered, there’s nothing missing. You’d act as if the thing you seek is already here. Perhaps all you need to do is now make preparations to receive it. Simple example to illustrate the principle: If you prayed for a new wardrobe and you were confident it would be delivered, you’d clean out your closet of all your old clothes, wouldn’t you? Or, if you’re in sales, you would make the sales call, embodying success (alignment, remember?). You wouldn’t just sit and hope for the phone to ring (like me hoping for Knight Rider to show up).

3. ALLOW

Knowing that the prayer is already answered, again, there’s no need for you to chase or push or force or strive to “make it happen.” Your part–after aligning your feelings and taking the appropriate action–is to simply surrender and allow it. That’s how the possibility that was there all along is unleashed. There is mystery in prayer. Something is possible that is beyond your imagination. In that case, the way to step beyond the known, into the unknown, is to surrender (which includes being patient) and allow yourself to be amazed.

This isn’t easy work, by the way. And you need to give yourself a lot of grace in the process. But… isn’t what you’re praying for worth working for?

There’s another story in the Bible of three kings who were leading their armies into battle. They ran out of water, which would mean death to their soldiers and their animals. One of the kings said, paraphrasing, “Surely God has brought us here to be defeated.” See the victim mentality?

One of the other kings called on a prophet for wisdom and they were told to dig trenches through the valley, which would then be filled with water — even with no sight of rain. This would provide all the water they needed, and it would be a “simple thing” for God, the prophet said.

Once again, the “magical” miracle required that the people participate: Align, Act, and Allow.

I absolutely believe that there is “something else going on here,” beyond what we can see. I am comforted by that, but I also know now that I must ask, What can I do? What is my role in this?

Sometimes, our role is very small. Sometimes, it’s just taking one step forward. Maybe that’s as far as you can go, and then you relax, let go, and trust.

A lot of surrender, a lot of trust, is required of us right now. But just know, just because you don’t see what you’re looking for right now doesn’t mean it’s not already en route. And for all you know, your order has been upgraded to something beyond your imagination.

At 7 years old, the best I could’ve done was look at KITT, and maybe sit in the driver’s seat. At 42, I got to drive the damn thing! It was worth the wait.

May you know grace and peace today. May you know you are loved. May you know you are guided and supported. May you be well.

Shawn Ellis - Resilience Coach
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