Ever experienced a time when it was difficut to pray? I have.
Maybe you had so much on your heart and mind, that you weren’t sure where to start? Been there.
Or maybe you’ve found yourself struggling to block out all the noise and settle your mind to pray? I can relate. We live in a noisy time, don’t we?
Even when our minds aren’t settled, our hearts are heavy, or God doesn’t feel especially close… He is present. He is ready to hear. He is often ready to speak.
Here are four tools I’ve learned help me when it’s difficult to pray. I hope one or some might help you.
1. Not sure where to start? Start with what Jesus taught.
Maybe lost in all the tradition and repetition of “The Lord’s Prayer” (Matthew 6:9-13) is the fact that this is how Jesus taught His followers how to pray.
It’s a prayer that is both simple and rich. Jesus is able to pack worship, mission, repentance, and requests for both physical and spiritual needs into this short prayer. #JesusIsAGenius
Suggestion: What if you tried praying this prayer in your own words?
2. A lot on your mind? Grab a pen and paper.
I’ve found that when I have a lot on my mind that it is helpful to begin writing my prayers down. Doing this helps me organize my thoughts as I pray. This practice also ends up provding a kind of prayer journal. Keep that journal so that you can look back and see how God answered your prayers.
Spoiler Alert: If you do this, you will experience awe as you look back how God worked in your life.
3. Ask someone to pray with and for you.
Yes — this means in person. As we become more connected technologically and less connected personally, this is becoming harder to do. But we’ve got to pray with and for eachother. I’m so thankul for friends who have been willing to pray with and for me, especially during times of dissapointment and difficulty.
Consider: Who is someone in your life that you could ask to pray with and for you?
4. Be quiet.
Sometimes (ok — a lot of the time) we talk too much when we pray. Prayer is not a one-way talking exercise. When God created the heavens and the earth, what did He do? He spoke. When Jesus proclaimed that His saving work on the cross was finished, He spoke. I would contend that there is nothing more powerful than when God speaks. So wouldn’t it make sense to be still, be quiet, and listen?
Be still, and know that I am God. Psalm 46:10