Prayer is a conversation with God. A chat with our Heavenly Father. An opportunity to draw us closer and strengthen our relationship with him. And as with any relationship, communication is essential.
Obviously the Bible talks a lot about prayer. I’ve heard plenty of teachings on prayer. Jesus himself gives us an example, kind of a template, with “The Lord’s Prayer”.
But I’m a talker. And often I wonder if my prayers are too informal. Am I praying “right”?
One thing I do know is that God loves me, and wants a personal relationship with me. That’s why he sent Jesus. And I’m not about to try to define the “right” way to pray. But I do see some things in Scripture that I try to keep in mind.
Be devoted to prayer. Pray when you’re joyful…when you’re in need…when you’re thankful…to acknowledge God’s holiness…and just to say “hi”..
Have an alert mind. Focus on what you’re praying about. Not on the t.v., or on your “to do” list.
And be thankful because God will move in a way that will ultimately prove to be perfect.
Devote yourself to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart. Colossians 4:2.
Pray earnestly. (Serious in intention, purpose or effort; showing sincerity of feeling). Mean what you pray. Be sincere. God will certainly know if you’re not.
…The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results. James 5:16
Be bold. God likes boldness. Prophets and Apostles preached boldly. (Micah 3:8, Acts 28:31) And many people throughout the Bible prayed boldly. And because of Jesus…we can be bold, too.
Because of Christ and our faith in him, we can now come boldly into God’s presence. Ephesians 3:12
Be persistent. Jesus tells a parable about a persistent friend who eventually gets in because of his “shameless persistence” (Luke 11:5-10). Sometimes in being persistent we will see prayers answered in the way we hoped for. Other times in being persistent, God will change our heart and we’ll trust in His way.
One thing I do know from personal experience is that regular prayer will change you! You will begin to see the world more and more through God’s eyes – and everything will look better.