Fresh prayers

I recently heard this analogy:

You are given 30 minutes to talk with ____ (fill in your favorite). You anticipate it; you prepare for it; you delight in it when it happens. coffee cups

The next day, you’re told you have 30 MORE minutes. With this caveat: You have to have the EXACT same conversation.

Okay – still good. There were words you didn’t notice the first time. It’s good to have the repeat.

Next day, same thing. Again. And again. And again.

Before long, you come to DREAD the time and long to get out of it. It no longer brings pleasure, but torture instead.

Is this how we approach our conversations with God?

“I have 30 minutes (or less) to spend talking with God today. What do I say? Repeat the same things over and over? The same requests. The same thanks. The same confessions.”

If this is what we do, no wonder we don’t look forward to it.

Granted, there are things that we need to repeat to God every day. And those things don’t get old.

But our prayers need not become so repetitious that we recite them with no thought.

* * *

Here are 4 ways to keep your conversations with God fresh.

1. Rotate the focus
For example, while I pray for my immediate family members every day, I put a major focus on only one at a time. Monday: my Hey listenhusband. Tuesday: My oldest daughter. Wednesday: My youngest daughter. Thursday: Me. 

2. Pray through scripture
I cycle through different scripture prayer books. My favorites are the Face to Face books by Kenneth Boa, “Volume 1: Praying the Scriptures for Intimate Worship,” and “Volume 2: Praying the Scriptures for Spiritual Growth.”

I’ve used them for years and they haven’t gotten old yet. They are word-for-word Bible passages, except phrased in the first-person so I can read and pray them aloud straight from my heart.

3. Update your list
I’m often surprised when I look at the dates of some my prayer requests. Have I really been praying about ___ for 2 years? No wonder it’s become rote. Time to follow up and see if anything is new in the situation so I can adjust my prayers accordingly. OR accept that God’s answer was “no” and let it go.

4. Pray through time
Past:
Thank God for the specific ways you saw him work in your past 24 hours. Confess areas where you messed up yesterday, and thank him for his perpetual forgiving spirit.

Present: What are you thankful for in this very day? What do you need help with? How can you praise God right now just for who he is?

Future: Ask for God’s blessings on the upcoming events of this evening and tomorrow morning. Talking and listening with him will change your attitude and outlook.

* * *

Living a life of prayer need not be hard work if we keep it fresh. Just as we and our circumstances change a little (and sometimes a lot!) every day, so our conversations with God should change accordingly.

Nobody is as interested in the details of our lives as God is. And nobody has as much to give us in return. What a rich relationship he offers each of us if we’ll simply take the time to talk with him!

Walk with Him Wednesday @ Holy Experience

Join the community at Holy Experience for more ideas on how to cultivate the discipline of prayer. You’ll be blessed.

More of my Walks with Him

6 comments:

Maria said...

Fresh prayers.
Will remember this ~
Maria

Renee said...

Living a life of prayer ~ this topic has come to me more than once in the past week...God is nudging me....this is a very good post with info I can apply to my time with God. Thanks.

MooBee Mama said...

This is a sweet and very helpful post. I was looking for a good book recommendation too. Thank you!

Cassandra Frear said...

Good, practical suggestions!

Helen said...

I quite simply loved this post...thanks so much!

cristie said...

thank you. xox

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