July 2, 2013

A Peek At My Prayer Life

 

Have you ever caught yourself falling asleep while you were praying? 

Does your mind ever wander to completely unrelated subjects while you pray, like the grocery list, the meeting you will attend later in the day, or some TV show you forgot to TiVo? 

Or, do you find that you just don’t know what to pray about? 

Uh, me too. 

It’s called being human. Welcome to reality.

I used to beat myself up about my lack of focus and my lack of a desire to actually talk to God. That is, until I started keeping a journal. Writing my prayers down keeps me focused on the task at hand and, even better, provides me with a written record of God’s activity in my life. 

Here are a few of the questions I ask myself before I pray:

  1. What Scripture has God used to speak to me lately?
     
  2. How have I experienced God lately?
     
  3. What adjustments do I feel God is calling me to make?
     
  4. Who needs my prayers?

Then, I simply talk with God. No “thee’s” and “thou’s.” I just ask Him to explain things to me and talk with Him about what He wants from my life. It’s not rocket science. It’s not even very eloquent. I don’t put on any airs.

Sometimes I write out my prayer. Other times, I just make bullet points. Every few months, I find it incredibly helpful to look back over my journal. You’d be surprised at what you see. I have been. Often, I don’t see the forest for the trees. Reviewing my journal entries gives me a bird’s-eye view on my relationship with God.

That’s my prayer life. My mind tends to wander to all the things I want to accomplish in the day, so I need a way to focus my attention if I want to “stay alert and be persistent” in my prayers, like Ephesians 6:18 teaches. So, my trusty journal helps me sharpen my prayer life.

So, what holds you back from a prayer life that you could be happy about? Figure it out and develop a solution. It’s worth it ... and you need it!

CC Image • Walt Stoneburner on Flickr
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