A few weeks ago, I sat across from a friend, drinking coffee and talking. We had a really fun time sharing about what Jesus was doing in our hearts and soon the subject of prayer came up. My friend asked if I had a certain way to keep track of who I was praying for.
What was funny about her question was that another one of my girl friends had emailed me the day before with the same question. And she asked if I would write a post about my prayer routine and the ways I remembered who I wanted to pray for.
So today I would love to share a few practical things that have helped sustain me in prayer. This is not a full or complete list on all things that you can do in prayer, but just a few of the things that I have found personally helpful.
My Prayer Routine:
One of my favorite ways to pray is when I am alone. The boys are tucked into their beds for naps, and Mark is at work. I will often turn on a worship cd. Music stirs my heart to worship through prayer. If I lose words I can begin to pray what is being sung or start praying Scripture.
After I turn on the music, I read a passage of Scripture. I read it out loud as if I am preaching a sermon to myself. I heard someone say that you should, “Preach the Gospel to yourself every day.” I love that. Nothing moves my heart like the word of God and hearing His Gospel preached to my heart. After I’ve read the passage and God is beginning to convict, show me how great He is, etc…I open my mouth in prayer.
I will begin to declare who God is. “God, you are good… You offer salvation. You are mighty and strong to save. You are worthy of my praise. You are high and lifted up, seated on your throne. My heart worships you Jesus…” etc…
When I declare who God is I can’t help but lay out my sin before Him. I ask Him to move my heart into alignment with His word. I am making war against my sin, so this is usually not a quiet prayer. I usually need to speak truth from His word over my heart as I beg Him to transform me. I speak these truths loudly over myself because I need a heart change. Often times this type of prayer is accompanied with many tears as His kindness leads me to repentance.
After the Lord has worked in my heart, and brought me back into alignment with His word, He will often lead me to pray for other people or personal situations. Sometimes I know who I want to pray for because of what has happened earlier in the day or week, but other times He leads me in the moment to pray for a specific person. This type of prayer is often accompanied with joy, tears, groaning, dancing, stomping, and even shouting as the Lord leads me to literally cry out for people.
After I present my troubles, and other people’s burdens I again turn to how sufficient Jesus is. I declare who He is over their situation and my situation. I usually end with thanking Him for what He has done and what He will do.
- Pick a certain time of the day to pray.
- Get alone.
- Read the Bible out loud.
- Pray Scripture.
- Listen to worship music while you pray.
- Pray out loud.
That is kind of what my prayer routine looks like. In a place of amazement, I pray because God has relentlessly pursued my rebel heart. He has transformed me. And He has made me passionate to be in His presence.
In the rest of this series, as we are becoming a people who persist in prayer, I will to share some practical ways to remember the people and circumstances you want to pray for.