Helping Prayer

Ever feel like your prayer life is anemic? Ever feel like you’re just praying to the walls or don’t have much consistency? Do you feel like your prayer life

Lord's Prayer in 1614 Bible

Image via Wikipedia

 

ends up with a few short sentences, “uhm, Lord help me….ahh Lord be with my friend and bless my day?”

Luke 11:1 Now Jesus was praying in a certain place. When  he stopped, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray,

This is where we learn how to pray. Jesus modeled it throughout the gospel of Luke. Just do a search for prayer in Luke and you’ll see a glimpse of Jesus’ life in prayer. It ran throughout his life and ministry. He prayed at key times and normal days. He got alone with the Father and prayed with others.

But note the disciples request here. They asked Jesus to teach them how. They had seen it modeled, now they wanted to practice it themselves. I believe this is the most important request as we can have. We must ask the Lord himself to teach us how to pray. He certainly knows how to do it and he most certainly wants to show us how. He will answer this request!

The model he gives to the disciples is what we now call the Lord’s Prayer. It is simple, straight forward yet covers so much of what prayer needs to be. As many have considered what Jesus was telling us, they’ve put together some other ways to practice this prayer.

P-R-A-Y. This acronym stands for Praise, Repent, Ask, Yield. I’ve used this method a lot because it is so easy to remember.

A-C-T-S. Another acronym that my YL leader, Tom Hammon taught me. Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication.

Face to Face. This is a great book I use often. The author, Ken Boa, breaks down the Lord’s Prayer into seven segments. Each has a scripture that expands our view of say, praise or confession. I also find helpful that in the supplication segment Boa adds a seven day series of different things to pray for like: the government, the poor, my family, my vocation. When I just pray I forget to lift up these very important topics. This helps to broaden and enrich as I converse with God.

The Divine Hours. I ran into this through Scot McKnight when came to visit the staff at The Chapel. This prayer help is more meditative. It borrows from the monastic practice of praying the hours. So there is a morning time, noon time, evening and bedtime prayer. The beauty here is that prayer becomes something very ingrained, not just a few minutes in the morning. I love using it on prayer walks. There’s also website with the “hours” that you can log on to with your smartphone or computer. explorefaith

Praying is a bit like eating healthy. It is hard to do it correctly, but as we experience the benefits of eating well or praying well we thoroughly love it.

Any things that have helped you to pray?

 

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