Scripture: “But when you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private. Then your Father, who sees everything, will reward you.” Matthew 6:6 NLT
Now that we have established what prayer is, we can begin to understand how to make our prayer lives unique. When praying, it’s important to have your own voice because God wants to hear what your heart has to say. When first learning how to pray, having others teach you the basics (effective words, acknowledging God, asking for forgiveness, starting/ending your prayer, etc.) is very helpful, but at some point, you must grow and develop your own words that correspond to your life.
Personalizing your prayer life is as easy as the Five W’s: Who, What, When, Where & Why.
It’s very clear that we are talking with God during prayer, but sometimes we have to ask ourselves: Who are we praying for besides ourselves? Our families? friends? co-workers? Not only does praying for others please God, it can also provide us with healing. (James 5:16)
What are you praying for ? Healing? Restoration? A fresh start? Be open and transparent with God. Tell Him what you’re seeking for. He already knows what you’re thinking so just be honest with Him. That’s one thing God loves: Honesty. Once you open up and confess what you want from Him, He’ll work on your behalf. (This also comes with obedience.)
When developing a prayer life, often times people will set a specific time every day just to pray. What will that time be for you? How long to do want to pray each day? Please know that your designated prayer time does not have to be a long, drawn out process. It’s not about how much you say something, but about what you say, and how you say it. In Matthew 6:7, Jesus said, “And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words.”
The great thing about God is that He is omnipresent. He is able to hear you from wherever you are! So whether you are at work, the park, in the car, or at home, he hears you! And He is listening to every last word. If you are thinking about choosing a set time to pray every day, think about what place is most convenient for you. Sometimes before I begin praying, I just like to meditate on God and His goodness. Maybe you can think of a place that will allow you to do so as well.
“What Is Your Why?” Why is developing a prayer life important to you? Keep your reasoning in mind when first starting your prayer life. It should help you stay focused while in prayer.
This Week’s Journal Prompt: As you begin your prayer journey, write down how your first scheduled prayer time went? Was it great? Would you change some things around (time, location, etc.)? Be mindful that this is YOUR prayer time. Make it appropriate and ideal to your daily schedule and write down a plan of how you want it to be.