If you’re like me, you fall into the trap of only praying when you need something. We know that we are instructed in the Bible to bring our requests to God, but we also are to pray to worship, be thankful, intercede for others, pray for causes and mission, and for the main purpose which is to communicate with God and build relationship with Him.
“Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
We know we should pray more, but sometimes we need some motivation or encouragement. If you’ve found your prayer life stalled in neutral, here are some tips that might help:
- Fasting – whether food, media or some other activity. Replace it with time spent in prayer, Bible reading and listening.
- New location – shake things up by taking a walk, finding a different location that’s quiet or take a drive. Doing this on purpose and with intent might help you focus.
- Use pre-written prayers – using The Lord’s Prayer/Our Father, The Apostles Creed, prayers in scripture or The Book of Common Prayer can help you find the words.
- Use music – the lyrics to a song might inspire you. Listen to the song, sing along and pray the words and let that lead you into the rest of your prayer.
- Be active – prayer doesn’t always have to be quiet and still. If you’re having trouble focusing, try doing a mundane activity to keep your hands busy and mind focused. Brother Lawrence in his book “Practicing The Presence of God” wrote that his best times of prayer were when he was in service by washing the dishes.
- Be creative – write your prayers down like a song, poem or journal entry. Draw, paint, sculpt, take photos of nature, scrap book, whatever you like to do creatively.
- Pray with others – during Sunday service isn’t the only time you can pray with someone else. Pray with your small group or Bible study, your friend or spouse or family members. Maybe organize a weekly prayer meeting with some people you know.
Have you ever been in a prayer rut? What are some things that have helped you in the past?