My heart has heard You say, “Come and talk with Me.” And my heart responds, “Lord I am coming.” – Psalm 27:8
At the beginning of the year God was really talking to me about my prayer life. I truly wasn’t taking time to just draw closer to the Lord in sincere prayer. It had become a routine, it was dry and although I would like to say I meant every prayer, it was probably meaningless as it was rushed and performed as a tick box exercise.
It is scary how we, as Christians, take for granted something that is so vital. We know that it is through prayer that we build our relationship with God and that it is one of the key moments God uses to talk to us, yet we at times, can allow weeks to pass without spending quality time with Him.
If you can relate, then hopefully the following points about prayer will bring about some much needed revival:
- It can be personalised
When I first came to Christ I really struggled with the idea of praying in front of people. On several occasions I felt the pull of God telling me to take someone’s hands and pray for them, and I neglected to do so because I was worried about whether I was praying right. I used to look at the ladies I considered prayer warrior’s and wished I could pray as eloquently yet ferociously as they did. I would pray at home mimicking commonalities from their prayers — I didn’t realise I was struggling with my prayer life because I hadn’t made it personal!
I’ve never been one to copy the lingos of the time or speak street slang. I’ve never cared to talk the way others do, so I’m unsure why I desired to pray the way others do! I think many people often forget that prayer is a conversation with God — sometimes He responds, other times He just listens, but either way it is a conversation! We don’t have to follow the common patterns that other people use, we don’t have to worry about it sounding uber spiritual and we don’t even have to worry about what to say – we just have to speak earnestly with God! And when He is calling us to pray for others, let His spirit lead! After all, it is Him that is urging us to pray, so it will be His spirit that talks.
So, if this is something you struggle with too, just speak with God in the same way you would your friend. As your prayer life develops so will your prayers. But don’t be afraid to start because you don’t know how or you’re unsure what to say! God already knows what you want to say, His just waiting for you to approach Him, because in doing this, you are showing you need and desire to be closer to Him.
- Strengthen with scripture
War Room put me onto this (shout out to Priscilla Shirer). I can’t lie, watching this film was a turning point in my prayer life. When words failed me during prayer, God would drop a scripture into my heart and I would be filled with a sense of peace.
Shortly after I watched War Room I listened to a word, also by Priscilla, on the spiritual armour in Ephesians 6. In this she points out that the Sword, which is the word, is the only piece of the armour that is used for attack the rest is used for defence. But to use the word, we must first know it! So I’ve said it before and I will say it again, read the word DAILY! It isn’t just a reference point used for conduct or a tool for building wisdom, it is also a powerful weapon that gives strength to prayer!
Once you know the word, you will be able to freely call upon scriptures during prayer giving God’s word back to Him because you know none of his promises return void!
I can remember when I first gave my life to Christ I experienced an immense attack from the enemy. I called out to God saying “God, Your word tells us to come unto You and You will give us rest, where is my rest God?!”. I was tired, emotionally drained and under the illusion that being a Christ follower meant that everything would be easy moving forward. When I woke up the next morning I had the most serene feeling of peace I have ever experienced in my life, I cannot describe it and give it its due justice. That feeling stayed with me for around 6 months and although the attack persisted during this time His peace was with me and I finally understood what it meant when people say “the Lord is my strength”.
I believe this peace was a direct result of giving God’s word back to Him, but I also believe that God was just waiting for me to quit striving and give it to Him, which I did from that day.
- Sometimes just say thank you
We complain of friends that only want to know us when they want or need something, yet many use God as if He is a genie! Is this not the same thing?
Sometimes prayer should just be about expressing your awe for God and the things He has done in your life. Thank Him for His wisdom that has called you out of your sin, thank Him for provision — that there is no day you go hungry and without food and shelter and thank Him for friendships that console you in your hour of need.
If you truly take the time you will realise you have so much to be thankful for! So, don’t let the feeling of lack or the desires of your heart make you forget that the things you have now were once amongst the stuff you once prayed for! Thank God for His faithfulness — that He is Jehovah-Jireh (the God that provides) and all your needs are met in and through Him.
- End with praise
Anyone who knows me well knows I LOVE praise and worship. But as much as I love it, God loves it more! The word tells us that the lifting up of our hands in prayer and worship is like the sweet smell of incense to the Lord.
For me, ending with praise is a good way of showing God that I don’t just come to Him because He is my provider, but because I truly do adore Him and He truly is worthy of all praise!
So, I hope these points help and serve as a form of refreshment to your prayer life. And remember you can pray anywhere at anytime! God is always listening.
God Bless xx
Supporting Scriptures: Matthew 10:19, Romans 8:26-27, 1 Chronicles 16:11, 1 Timothy 2:1, 1 Chronicles 28:9, Psalm 19:14, Philippians 4:6-7, Ephesians 6:10-20, Joshua 21:45, Isaiah 55:11, Philippians 4:12-13, Psalm 28:7, Psalm 45:10, 2 Corinthians 4:15, Psalm 9:1, 2 Chronicles 5:13, Psalm 141:2