6 Steps to Effective Prayer
I would call it “Prayer for Dummies” but prayer is the smartest decision we can make.
This is just a template. God loves our uniqueness and is creative so go with His flow. Like snowflakes or fingerprints, no two prayer times are identical.
- Set an appointment: Since I tend to be a bit ADD, first thing out of the sack, I’m on my face.
- Show up: Commit & follow through regardless of circumstances. Stubborn persistence is your friend.
- Servant’s Heart: You’re addressing the Lord God, Creator of Heaven & Earth, One Who is far beyond comprehension. Toss the pride. The angels around His throne say, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, Who was and is and is to come.” Repeating that sentence while trying to grasp the magnitude of what you’re saying might be all that’s needed to enter true Throne room focus.
- Seek Gratitude: We live in a very negative world. It’s easy to focus on what’s not right. Peel your eyes away from the yuk and say what you have to be grateful for. You’re breathing? That’s a start. Some of the most amazing times of prayer have been when I’m caught up in gratitude. It’s as if I can feel the eyes of Heaven pause as they search the earth to focus on little ol’ me in my closet. Gratitude opens the lines of communication like nothing else.
- Speak His Heart: Ask God to make you a conduit of His love. If you pray in the Spirit (speaking in tongues) that will help since God’s heart and thoughts are so different from our tendency toward self-centeredness. When I choose to speak in tongues or “in the Spirit,” I’m admitting, “I don’t have a real clue of what You want me to pray in this regard. Please flow through, flush the gunk in my mind & bring me into alignment with You.” Speaking in tongues is not imperative to a powerful prayer time but it helps this process flow rather than stumble over my will and/or the voice of pride that longs to dictate to God.
- Stillness: “Be still & know that I Am God.” Whenever your prayer time breaks through to a conscious, overwhelming sense of “God is here,” STOP. Soak in the moment. Soak in His love. Soak in His character. Abide. Wait. Listen. “Like a weaned child at his mother’s breast …” (Psalm 131:2) Total peace and contentment, not striving, at rest. Let Him fill your soul, healing, comforting, giving peace that passes understanding. Please don’t rush. God cherishes His time with you.
Prayer experiences can run the gamut from gut-wrenching sobs of repentance or intercession to near-coma-peace. God’s character is always the same but His personality is multi-hued-mesmerizing. Jesus is the reason we can approach with confidence. When He taught the disciples how to pray, he kept it simple. He IS the greatest adventure.
*The book that spurred me on to daily prayer: Red Moon Rising by Pete Greig
*Another great resource: God On Mute, also by Pete Greig
Chana is wife of one, mom to four and bestselling author of two. She brakes for old barns, chai, homemade cookies and any time someone needs to watch Pride & Prejudice.
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