Today I want to talk to you about prayer. I know this can be a pretty broad topic, but I’m going to try and simplify it. For the record, I am a Christian so I’m talking about praying to our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. As always, I will be using the ESV because I feel it is the easiest to read and understand. Feel free to use your favorite translation.
When should we pray? In Luke 18:1, Jesus was speaking to His disciples. “And He them a parable to the effect that they ought always to pray and not lose heart.” We are to pray constantly, without ceasing. Praying is not just bringing our needs to Jesus, but it’s a conversation with Him. How would you feel if a close friend only spoke to you when they needed something? Pretty bad, right?
How should we pray? I encourage you to read Matthew 6:5-15, but I’m going to focus on verses 9-13. “Pray then like this: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come, Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.”
That’s all that is required because He already knows our needs and the desires of our hearts. He also knows how we have sinned better than we do. Romans 8:26 says, “Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words.”
I also like the ACTS format.
Adoration worship God for who He is, not what He has done.
Confession confess your sins to God
Thanksgiving thank God for all of your blessings
Supplication bring any needs or desires to Him
Psalm 77:11-15 goes along with adoring God and it says, “I will remember the deeds of the LORD; yes, I will remember your wonders of old. I will ponder all your work, and meditate on your mighty deeds. Your way, O God, is holy. What god is great like our God? You are the God who works wonders; you have made known your might among the peoples. You with your arm redeemed your people, the children of Jacob and Joseph.”
You can always come to Jesus and talk with Him, especially when you are hurting and feel broken. Hebrews 4:16, “Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need”. Never feel like you can’t talk to God, He loves you.
I highly recommend keeping a prayer journal listing prayer requests with the dates when you first started praying and when God answered them. I have had to wait years for God to answer many of my prayers, but when He did I was more grateful to Him. It is always in His time and not our own, but seeing His faithfulness on paper is incredible!