Whatever you are facing this week, we pray that this prayer guide shared by our friend Katie will be an encouragement to you to seek refuge in the One who is faithful. While most of us are not facing literal “lions and cobras” as Psalm 91 mentioned, we each face spiritual battles in our lives that only God can help us overcome.
Katie is a young woman who loves God and seeks to love Him more. God has been very real to Katie through challenges and victories, hard times and easy times, sickness, and health. She feels a vivid desire to help others who have struggled or who are going through struggles, to share the knowledge God has provided her. She wishes to share the message of a God Who redeems the hard times in our lives, Who turns the pain into beauty, Who takes the weak and upholds them in His grace. You can email her at email@example.com or check out her family’s ministry website www.SearchingForZebras.com
I was working on yet another project, and instead of turning on music, I decided to pray to my heavenly Father while working. I began to tell Him how wonderful He is. And that’s when He spoke to me, “I want your heart, not your words.” That quiet impression caused me to pause and contemplate.
I had been busy for quite a few days. So much of it was in service to Him, but was I serving out of my own strength? Had I taken quality time to get to know Him better lately? Or was I treating Him as a pep stop, where I get a quick fix and rush on with life? Was I just speaking words, or was I giving Him my heart?
It’s easy to fit God into our schedule, and a bit harder to fit our schedule around Him.
It’s a struggle. But most good things are.
“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” (Matthew 6:33)
Prayer is a part of our relationship with our Maker.
Today, let’s give Him more than our words, let’s give Him our hearts.
In the book of 1 Timothy, we are told to pray for our leaders:
“I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men; For kings, and for all that are in authority; that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and honesty.” (1 Timothy 2:1-2)
Prayer is a way that we can make a difference in our country.
It might seem like our prayers don’t matter when it comes to praying for well-known leaders, but we know that the “effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much” (James 5:16b). Instead of complaining or becoming discouraged, we can choose to pray to the One who is most high over all the earth, and cast our cares upon Him (1 Peter 1:5).
President Trump needs us Christians to pray for him.
Having to make decisions for an entire country is not an easy job. We need to pray that President Trump will have wisdom (Proverbs 3:13) and will surround himself with counselors (Proverbs 15:22).
Here are ten prayers from the book of Proverbs to pray for our president:
It takes choices. It takes faith. It takes abiding in Yeshua (Jesus).
Our busy schedules try to stifle it. Distractions hinder it. Sometimes even when we’ve set aside time to sit in God’s presence, our minds start drifting in other directions, and minutes later we realize that we’ve hardly even said a word to Him or listened to what He’s trying to show us.
I’ve been there. There are times when I feel my prayer life struggling, and times when it feels so alive. The good news is that every day we have a choice, and every year is a new start.
Here are some ideas to encourage your prayer life this year:
Listen to Music
Most worship songs are prayer put to music. When we praise God, it welcomes His presence into our everyday lives. Scrubbing baseboards, cooking dinner, or driving to town can become times of worship, so turn that music up.
Keep a Prayer Journal
Keeping a prayer journal can help you stay focused while praying. When I write a prayer to my heavenly Father, it’s often more reverent, thoughtful, and focused than when I say it. Plus, if you’re crazy about starting journals (like I am), this is yet another excuse to get a cute notebook (T.J. Maxx, y’all).
So often the minutes of free time in our days are twiddled away, but they can be wonderful opportunities to take a break and rest in God’s presence. Do you have a few minutes to spare because you’re ready to leave the house early? (Confession: that doesn’t happen with me.) Do you have ten minutes of free time while the cookies are baking, or a minute before your toddler calls for you again? Each of these minutes are gifts from the Father.
Find a Prayer Partner
Prayer doesn’t have to be a lonely thing. Perhaps there’s a prayer group you could join, or maybe you have a friend who would like to commit to a regular time of prayer together (whether in person or on the phone). Can’t think of a prayer partner? Pray for one. If it’s God’s desire, He’ll bring along someone who will join you in prayer. Not only will this bring accountability and focus to your prayer life, it can strengthen a friendship in a special way as you seek His face together. Which leads us to…
Pray with Friends
After a chat on the phone or an afternoon spent with friends, prayer is a great way to close your time spent together. Also, if something comes up in your conversation that needs prayer, volunteer to pray right on the spot. It’s amazing the comfort and strength we can receive from God in those times. It might seem awkward at first, but I’ve found that it means a lot to friends.
Set a reminder on your phone to pray at a certain time of the day, or place sticky notes around your home. Also, when you think of someone, pray for them. This is a great way to “pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17).
Use Prayer Guides
Not only will prayer guides give you inspiration, they can also help you stay committed to daily prayer. What are you wanting to pray more about? There are quite a few prayer guides online that might be just what you were looking for. (You can also check out our “Resources & Reviews” page for a collection of prayer guides and inspiration.)
What are some more ways to focus on prayer this year?
My family has always been a “together family.” If Mom goes grocery shopping, we all go along. It is just the way we have always done things.
About three years ago, we added another member to my family’s everyday life.
Not a child, as you would think, but my grandmother. I remember thinking about how much fun it would be to have my grandmother living with us. She could make delicious meals for us, go with us on family outings, and share her knowledge about life with us. A few weeks after she moved in, we realized that space was a major issue. All of us felt cramped.
As a family, we began to pray for guidance.
We felt as if Yahweh was calling us to move to a bigger house with my grandmother, but months passed, and it seemed impossible to find a house that would match our needs. Finally we found a house that was workable, but six months after moving in, we were getting cramped again. It was becoming frustrating. Grandmother didn’t seem to fit into our family any more. It brought tears to our eyes and frustration to our prayers. As much as we prayed, there was never a definite answer. We were divided over what we should do.
At several points on the journey, I got mad at God.
I didn’t understand why He had divided my family and why things like that had to happen. I stopped praying and started blaming. But slowly I began to pray again, and my attitude changed. The situation was the same, but my heart was being molded by the Almighty! He turned my life back to prayer, and in His timing, He answered our prayers.
Prayer brings us closer to God.
You may not have a situation like mine, but no matter how big or small the circumstances are, Yahweh is always there for you!
When was a time that prayer changed your attitude?
P.S. Revelation 12:11 shares that one of the ways to overcome is by the word of our testimony. Sharing our testimonies of answered prayer is a powerful reminder to us and to others of how our God is faithful. Do you have a prayer testimony you feel led to share in a blog post? Please contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org
When praying to the Creator of the Universe, it is important to be honest with Him. Yahweh knows our thoughts before we speak them. He knows everything about us.
I am reminded of a childhood memory.
My siblings and I would build with LEGO bricks. We had characters we created. I could have told you all about my minifigure–her personality, what she liked and didn’t like, and how she interacted with others. I determined each thing about her and knew everything.
Yahweh is like that. He knows all about us, because He created us.
When you come to Him in prayer, be honest, tell him your heart–be you. Bring your burdens to Him and rest in the peace of knowing that He sees you with eyes of grace.
-Psalm 139 Prayer-
Father, You know me. Everything that I do is known by You. You know my thoughts and are acquainted with all my ways. Every word on my tongue, You know before I say it. Your hand is on me. Everywhere I go, You are there. I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Search me, O God, and know my heart. Try me, and know my thoughts. See if there is any wicked way in me,
and lead me in the everlasting way.
As another year comes to an end, we can look back on these past months and see the victories and trials, the laughter and tears.
I don’t know what you’ve been through this year. Maybe it’s been your best year, or maybe your hardest. But as you look back, I pray that you can see His hand guiding, feel His presence leading, and hear His voice speaking. Even in the darkest nights the stars were still shining, and after the storm, the sun warmed your face. I hope you can see each blessing as a gift from above.
Let’s start off the year with thankfulness and prayer.
-A Prayer to Start off Your Year-
Father, I surrender my year to You, all its joys and tears, all its victories and trials. I want to walk in the power of your resurrection–rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, staying devoted to prayer. I want to draw closer to You this year and seek Your face like never before. Please give me the strength to be Your hands and feet and share Your love with this world. Remind me who You are and how you hold the whole world in Your hands. Thank You for providing all my needs, and saving me. May You receive all the glory this year. In Jesus’ (Yeshua’s) name, amen!
Father, I surrender my year to You, all its joys and tears, all its victories and trials. (Proverbs 3:5-6)
I want to walk in the power of your resurrection–rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, staying devoted to prayer. (Philippians 3:10, Romans 12:12)
I want to draw closer to You this year and seek Your face like never before. (Jeremiah 29:13)
Please give me the strength to be Your hands and feet and share Your love with this world. (1 Peter 4:10-11)
Remind me who You are and how you hold the whole world in Your hands. (Psalm 95:4)
Father, help me to remain unspotted from the world. Don’t let me become entangled again with the yoke of bondage. Guard my heart with all diligence, and keep me from the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes and the pride of life. I want to please You, Father, not men. Take away my fleshly desires to be friends with this world, and place in me desires to follow after You. Father, I no longer want to be conformed to this world. I want to be transformed to do Your will. I want to be a city that is set on a hill and cannot be hid. No longer do I want to serve man. I want to serve you, Father. Help me to enter the narrow gate that leads to life. Remind me daily to take up my cross and to follow you, no matter what that cross may be. Grow me closer to you each day and take away the foolishness that is considered wisdom by the world. Thank You for answering prayer and leading me closer to You. You are truly my strength when I am weak. May I bring glory and honor to Your name by being unspotted by the world. In Jesus’ name, amen!
Prayer is something that is sometimes hard to understand. Why do we pray? The Bible answers that question.
It connects us to our Creator.
“The Lord has heard my supplication, the Lord receives my prayer.” (Psalm 6:9)
It’s a way to love one another.
“But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you,” (Matthew 5:44)
“First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men,for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” (1Timothy 2:1-4)
It gives us courage and faith.
“Now He was telling them a parable to show that at all times they ought to pray and not to lose heart,” (Luke 18:1)
It keeps our souls from harm.
“Keep watching and praying that you may not enter into temptation; the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” (Matthew 26:41)
It works in ways we cannot see.
“For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.” (Ephesians 6:12)
It makes miracles happen.
“This is the confidence which we have before Him, that, if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.” (1 John 5:14)
Yeshua (Jesus) showed us how to pray.
“But Jesus Himself would often slip away to the wilderness and pray.” (Luke 5:16)
“Pray, then, in this way: ‘Our Father who is in heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’ ” (Matthew 6:9-13)
I hope these verses encourage you to today.
Whatever you’re holding inside your heart, pour it out before Him. He’s waiting to hear your voice, to bring you peace when you surrender, and to refresh your thirsty soul with His Spirit.