Pray Better Tonight: How to Pray to God More Effectively
I’ve done a few posts about prayer, and even dedicated a category to it. But, not everyone takes the time to go through old blog posts and read every article. (I know I don’t) That said, I’m going to simplify it to help you learn how to pray better.
1) Pray to prayer better: I can’t stress enough how important this is when learning how to pray better. The Lord is listening, and knows of your challenges in getting the words out. If you don’t know what to pray for, or the words aren’t coming, you need to devote specific prayers a few times a day to request that the Lord provide you with a better ability to pray. “Lord, if you are so willing, please teach me how to better communicate with you in a manner that will be acceptable in Your sight”. Remember that you are a servant in your prayer.
2) Prepare for prayer. Don’t underestimate the importance of clearing your mind and making preparation for the most holy act you’ll encounter all day. When trying to pray better, set aside a time to speak to God, and make a concentrated effort to stick to your plan. “Prayer Time” reminders in your phone or iPad may help to begin a new habit of daily devotion in prayer. Allow yourself to have enough time to devote to better prayer, and if you have family, excuse yourself for your prayer time. This sets a fine example, especially if the family joins you in silence in the home. Shut off tvs, radios and other noises that are distractions. Go into your room and close the door. (Matt 6:6)
3) Kneel. All the way, face down. We are not holy enough to see the face of the Lord, even in our minds. So many of us unintentionally take the holy act of speaking to God for granted. We get lazy in prayer, and tend to just start talking, as if any words at all will do. While we shouldn’t make a showy display of prayer in front of others, if we want to pray better, it is important to remember we are in direct connection to Christ, and we need to show submission and respect to the Father in heaven, and speak from the heart. When you kneel, kneel all the way if you can. If you’re unable to kneel due to back or other issues, sit up and place a pillow on your lap, fold your hands and put your elbows on the pillow. Or sit in a different position such as a chair that’s not too comfortable, with folded hands and head in full submission. Or, even better, lie down as much as you can, and not in a position that puts you to sleep. If you fall asleep while praying in bed, stop and ask yourself if it might not be better to pray while on the floor.
4) Give thanks, first. It’s easy to get in the habit of just immediately asking for things. If your dearest friend only spoke to you when they wanted something, would you eventually feel less important? This is how one can give God the glory that He deserves. In all prayers, thank God for things He continues to do for you in your daily life, even if they’re things you didn’t know He did.
5) Wait, and focus. If you get stuck for words, wait on the Holy Spirit by telling God you’d like the chance to be patient and wait in silence for the Holy Spirit to intercede and assist you in speaking your heart. Be in silence, imagine that Christ is listening, and wait until your comfort level begins to increase, and you’re ready to begin speaking. Know that He is listening. Ask yourself what needs to be addressed with the Father, and think deeply about what you’re doing. You’re talking to a Holy Being, and He knows your thoughts. Express your gratitude that He would offer such grace to you as to allow you to approach Him. Slowly begin speaking, and continue focusing on what’s in your heart. Don’t just speak. Read your heart out loud and take your time.
Pray more times per day, and devote yourself to completing each prayer.
Ladies may wear a head covering while kneeling to the floor to show complete submission. If you don’t have a head covering, use a light blanket or drape a scarf over your head before praying.
2 Chronicles 6:28-31 “If there is famine in the land, if there is pestilence or blight or mildew or locust or caterpillar, if their enemies besiege them in the land at their gates, whatever plague, whatever sickness there is, whatever prayer, whatever plea is made by any man or by all your people Israel, each knowing his own affliction and his own sorrow and stretching out his hands toward this house, then hear from heaven your dwelling place and forgive and render to each whose heart you know, according to all his ways, for you, you only, know the hearts of the children of mankind, that they may fear you and walk in your ways all the days that they live in the land that you gave to our fathers.