prayer 101 (who to pray for, what to pray, ways to pray)
Can I tell you a little about me?
I used to barely ever pray, even when I knew I needed to. I just didn't know how, I guess. So I prayed (ahhhh, the irony) that God would teach me how. That God would make me a woman of deep prayer, a prayer warrior.
On a hunt to find a way to pray that worked for me, I looked it up on Pinterest (because, honestly, that place is like a gold mine of information!). And there, the ideas circled in my brain as fast as that "Pin It" button popped up on my screen!
Long story short, I found a strategy that works for me, and I want you to find a way that works for you.
So I created this list, hoping that you will be able to take some of the ideas and make your own prayer strategy. I hope this helps ya out!
Let me start by saying that prayer is verrrryyyyy important, (like life-or-death-end-of-the-world important), Why, you ask?
BECAUSE PRAYER IS THE GREATEST AND MOST POWERFUL WEAPON WE HAVE! IT IS OUR DIRECT LINE OF COMMUNICATION TO THE CREATOR OF THE UNIVERSE! THROUGH PRAYER AND WITH GOD, NOTHING IS IMPOSSIBLE FOR US!!! WE CAN HEAL THE SICK, CAST OUT DEMONS, AND LITERALLY CHANGE THE WORLD! WE CAN MOVE MOUNTAINS, GOSHDANGIT!
Ehem, sorry for the outburst, but I wanted to be clear about how much a little prayer can do for ya.
Okay, so we know how important it is (and if we don't, we better look it up!) buuuuutttt, we all know that sometimes it's super hard to pray. Sometimes we don't know what to pray for, where to find the time, how to find the words, etc.
Prayer is hard, which should give us a clue as to how important it is. Nothing good ever comes easy.
Sooooooooo, with no further ado (and because I love you bunches and want you to PRAY PRAY PRAY), here are the lists.
Things/people that you can pray for:
- Your family
- Your friends
- Believers worldwide
- Your not-so-much-friends
- Your church
- Your ministry (Ex: your school, job, blog, social media, etc.)
Things that those you pray for need:
- that God's Will will be done in their lives
- that they will love God with all of their hearts, souls, and minds
- that they will love others as themselves
- that they will not have a love for the world
- that they will rejoice in God
- that they will think of others above themselves
- that they will guard their hearts and minds
- that they will have a thirst for righteousness
- that they will have a 1 Corinthians love
- that they will listen to Jesus’ voice and follow Him
- that the Spirit will convict them of sin
- that they will respond to the Spirit’s conviction
- that they will receive God’s message
- that they will soften their hearts to God
- that they will be sensitive to sin
- that they will have the boldness to proclaim the Gospel
- that they will confess their sins and turn to God
- that they will bear the fruit of the Spirit
- that they will be clothed with the Spirit’s armor
- that they will have grateful hearts and lips
- that they will flee temptation
- that they will surrender and give themselves to God
- that they will renew their mind with the Word
- that they will love the Word
- that they will go to God first with all of their worries
- that they will think things that honor God
- that they will be deep prayer warriors
- that they will be radically alive for God
- that they will defend those who cannot defend themselves
- that they will be strong and gentle leaders
- that they will silence lies with Truth
- that they will be unashamed of the Gospel
- that they will be forgivers
- that they will walk in unity with others
- that they will find peace in Jesus
- that they will talk about God wherever they go
- that they will put God first in their lives
- that they will not place their identity in anything but God
- that God's strength will be shown in their weakness
- that they will be slow to anger
- that they will be slow to speak
- that they will be listeners
- that they will have humble hearts
- that God will open their eyes to the Truth
- that they will show the love of Christ to all
- that God will grow their faith
- that they will do mighty things for God's kingdom
- that they will fix their eyes on Jesus
- that they will put their hope in Heaven
- that they will live by grace, not works
If you're like me and have no idea how to set up a doable prayer strategy, here are a few ideas:
- Prayer journals are fantastic! I like to keep my prayers in a journal with my bible study notes, sermon notes, poetry, quotes, etc. But there are so many ideas that you can find on Pinterest if you don't like that idea. I personally like this strategy because it gets my mind focused on God and it's a way to cast my burdens on God. I can also look back and see God working!
- Stick them on your wall. Keep a list of things/people to pray for on sticky notes or pieces of paper and different prayers that you want to pray over them, and tape them on your wall. I use this strategy, and it has helped me soooo much! When I'm having my quiet time, all I have to do is just look over and see the prayers. You can also put them on your mirror so you can pray while you're getting ready in the morning!
- Flashcards. Separate the things you pray for over the course of a week, write them on flashcards, and stick them on a claspy-ring thing. This is a way to make sure you pray for everything but also save time. I just started using this idea, and I like it. I also wrote a few prayers on flashcards so that I never run out of words, and I put a few bible verses on it. I got this idea from Allison at Simply Loving Jesus, where she posted her DIY here.
- Prayer Mate is a free app that I just started using, and I looooveee it. It allows you to pick promises and bible verses to pray over certain people, create lists and categories, write prayers, and organize them by day! I'm still getting the hang of it, but I already know that it's going to up my prayer game.
- Pray scripture. When you read your Bible and see a pray-able scripture, pray it! Psalms is a great place to start.
- Doodle while you pray. I'm not much of a doodler, but I've heard great things about this technique! You can learn more about it here and here.
- Set an alarm or reminder to go off everyday at a certain time to remind you to pray. You can set a couple different ones at different times to pray for different things. (Ignore the fact that I used the word "different" way too much in that sentence.)
Prayer is of the utmost importance in a Christian's walk with God. It is the essence of our lives, or should be. We are called to pray constantly, to give thanks in all things (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18).
This is hard to do, and though I'm still struggling, I will link arms with you and help you as best as I can. If you need prayer, advice, or just need to talk, shoot me an email. I would love to hear from you.
If you're a bit lost with this whole prayer thing, it's okay. We all are, but it's not okay to stay that way.