Why am I finding it difficult to pray? Even when I make stern decision to spend time with God, I still find it difficult to make time for it. What is wrong? How I’m I going to improve my prayer life and enjoy better relationship with God?
If the above, or something related to the above are your questions, you’ve found the right post for you.
To be realistic, one of the questions many believers around the world keep asking is how to develop a consistent prayer life. Yes, and a POWERFUL prayer life.
It’s always like the devil is after our prayer life; and he is. YES, THE DEVIL IS AFTER YOUR PRAYER LIFE. Even though we all commit to deepening our prayer life occasionally, due to one thing or the other that we can’t explain; we realized we are back to our former state- the state of being prayer-less. This wouldn’t be a strange experience for most believers.
However, for a believer, prayer is not an option. It is not what you may or may not do. It is a necessity. It is therefore expedient that a believer is concerned about how to develop a consistent prayer life.
Without a consistent prayer life, you’ll miss out on so many things on your spiritual growth and blessings. A regular prayer life is essential for a believer to assume his position and take his possessions.
In case you’re finding it difficult to have a vibrant prayer life that will enable you to enjoy the supplies of the spirit, I’m here to share with you, proving ways on how to develop a consistent and powerful prayer life.
Or perhaps somehow, you can’t pray as you do before. This was written with you in mind. Here you’ll find out how to get your prayer life back.
So, let’s get going!
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What is Prayer?
In a broader sense, Prayer is the interaction between the terrestrial and the celestial. It is the invitation of the celestial to the affairs of the terrestrials. It is the engagement of humanity with divinity. You must understand this before we dig into how to develop an effective prayer routine.
Popularly, prayer is defined as communication with God. This art of communication extends beyond the use of words.
Yes, prayer is beyond the use of words. You can pray without engaging your vocal cord. Many religions pray without uttering any word.
It’s not out of place to pray without any sound per se. Just like there are verbal and non-verbal communications. So there are verbal and non-verbal prayers.
Prayer, as communication with God, goes beyond mere talking to God to walking with God. In simple words, prayer is an interaction with God.
Every religion of the world prays.
Yes, the methodology of prayer differs. However, everyone’s aim in prayer includes reaching out to a supernatural ability.
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Reasons You Need a Consistent Prayer Life
The schedule is tight and 24 hours seems not to be enough. Many things are calling for your attention and they all appear to be urgent.
The more you wish you’ll have less to do, the more you find out there is a lot yet to be done. And then, we are tempted to treat prayer like a medicine. We remember its effectiveness only when we are down.
Learning how to develop a great prayer life is similar to learning how to be consistent with exercise.
Just like exercise, you must learn how to live a life of prayer. You have to grow from praying occasionally when in need; to seeing prayer as a lifestyle. This is the secret to a powerful prayer life.
Every trainer knows training is not an occasional thing. When you start to exercise again only after you’ve added some pounds, then you’ve lost some ground.
Same with prayer, when you pray only when in need, then, you’ve lost some spiritual ‘goodies’.
You need not lose ground spiritually. Below are valid points to put in mind, to be motivated to pray consistently
• Prayer time is a time to tap from the source
There is something I need you to know. And that is, the strength, wisdom, and grace needed to do your seemingly unlimited daily tasks can only be tapped from the place of prayer.
If you do not pray, you’ll not be able to engage supernatural strength and wisdom in the affairs of the day ahead. Remember, Jesus said, “without me you can do nothing” (John 15:5).
• Prayer time is a time to get divine instruction direction and guidance
Human beings are not omniscient, thus, we cannot see beyond our nose. To see into the future and be guided beyond our mortal wisdom, we need to rely upon God and connect to Him through the Holy Spirit in prayer.
Therefore, prayer time is beyond talking to God, we also listen to hear him talk to us.
Communication is not complete until we give and receive signals. So, as we pray, pouring our heart to God, we also listen to get divine instructions, directions, and guidance needed for the long haul ahead in the day and days to come.
David understood this; in his prayer time he said, “Teach me, Lord, what you want me to do…”(Ps 27:11 GNT).
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• Prayer time is a time to build on your faith
Just as we build our relationship with loved ones through quality communication, we also build our faith through quality fellowship with God in prayer.
We must be occupied not only with the thought to build our relationship with other men, or to build an empire in this life for ourselves, but also to build our faith.
Jude vs 20 says, But you, dear friends, carefully build yourselves up in this most holy faith by praying …” (MSG).
There are no other means to grow your faith than through persistent prayers.
• Prayer time is a time to express love to the object of your faith
Lovers don’t see only when they need to settle scores.
If lovers meet only when there are issues to settle, something is wrong with such a relationship.
Lovers long to be in the arm of each other and just stare into the face of one another; enjoying the moment together.
In the same manner, we do not pray just to make request and petition. We should not pray when only in trouble. We pray to interact. We pray to express our love to the one we swear our allegiance of faith to.
So, you need to develop a consistent prayer life because it’s an avenue to express your love to your God. And it’s nice to let you know that the Holy Spirit loves and anticipate such loving time together.
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How to Deepen Your Prayer Life And Make It More Powerful
Deepening your prayer life is like deepening your relationship with loved ones. It must be given priority. Many other things will demand for that time, but the precious moment to spend with a lover is highly esteemed, so it can not be sacrificed.
This will require being determined and deliberate. You’ll have to be persistent and consistent in your appointment with God in prayer as with a lover.
You’ll find below, points to note, not only to answer the question of how to begin to have a robust prayer life but the answers of how to deepen your prayer life.
1. Eat The Frog Before The Fish
In most cases, one of the major reasons, why people find it difficult to pray is because prayer is the last agenda on their list. If you see prayer as what you’ll do after you’re done with every other thing, you’ll become too tired to pray after all.
To have a consistent and effective prayer life, you must treat prayer as the first and the most important part of your day. It should be what you do first in the morning.
This does not mean you cannot pray every other time of the day. You just have to seek first the kingdom of God. You have to remove prayer from the last on your list; since it’s not the least important.
The principle of eating the frog first before the fish, means, to do the difficult task first.
It means to take care of the task you’re likely not to do but is very important in your list of to-do.
Since you’ve noticed that your prayer is often sacrificed for other activities, then, I’ll advise you to put it first. Make it a priority. Let your to-do list knows you want to have a consistent prayer life, and have it first before any other thing. “my voice You shall hear in the morning, O Lord; In the morning I will direct it to You, And I will look up.” (Ps 5:3NKJV)
People who have a vibrant prayer life with God put it at the top of their scale of preference.
Several times, the Bible reveals that Jesus prays very early before dawn. I believe that’s what he does before he hits his feet on the floor as he gets up from the bed.
I believe that doing this will be the beginning of a powerful prayer life.
2. Have a Prayer Time
“Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour.” (Acts 3:1KJV)
Having ‘hour of prayer’ will help you develop a consistent prayer life. In the above passage, Jesus’ disciples also have a prayer time!
This is how it works. Decide to pray at a particular time of the day and be determined to stick to that time. This is to condition you to pray at that time of the day or night.
Mind you, it’s advisable to choose a realistic time and a time when you’re less likely to be distracted; so you can have quality time to pray.
3. Learn from Weight Lifters
Another major reason why people get discouraged at praying consistently is that they attempt to go a long way from the start.
Have you registered for a gym session before? If yes, you’ll agree with me that you don’t start lifting heavy weight and doing the hard stuff on your first day at the gym. If you do, you’ll experience difficulties and become discouraged.
Every great starts small.
Allow your prayer time to grow with time. Don’t start by deciding to pray for 120 minutes in a stretch. If you’re a beginner, you’ll weary out yourself and eventually feel discouraged and stop trying.
It’s okay to start from 10 minutes and then allow yourself to grow with time. Gradually, you’ll see yourself going 15, 20, 30, 40 minutes until you begin to lose track of the time.
Do not be cajoled to pray like someone else. It’s okay to be motivated by others, but you must remember that everything worthwhile takes time to build. Allow yourself to gradually develop the habit of consistent prayer.
4. Keep It Simple!
Prayer doesn’t have to be ‘gymnastic’ in nature. Keep it simple in your way. Use your everyday language. It’s fine to pray like you’re talking to your father. After all, both prayers and confession of faith are communication with your heavenly Father.
No need for special diction and registers.
There is no point in trying to sound highly spiritual.
Prayer time shouldn’t be a terrific time.
The rule is, do whatever is comfortable for you.
However, watch out, so you don’t become too passive and sleep off. And even if you dose off, you need not crucify yourself for that. Simply try again next time in a different posture that will enable you to pray effectively.
Don’t forget you’re on a journey to developing a consistent prayer life. So, it’s not so bad if you miss it sometimes.
5. Make a Prayer List
Making a grocery list is an important part of going for shopping. This will help to be focused on what to buy and how much to buy. It will also help to remember the necessary things needed. By doing this, we make the most of the time we use to get things in the grocery store.
The prayer list is necessary for the same reasons we make a grocery list.
It will help you to pray more effectively. Your prayer list should be made in advance to your prayer time. This list may also include loved ones you want to pray for or even ‘goodwill prayers’ for those who had treated you badly.
With prayer list, you’ll be able to make the most of your prayer time by praying about things that matter to you. Using this can make you pray longer and more effectively.
I keep my prayer lists. I’ll advise you to do so too. This is to enable you to see the faithfulness of God and how much of your prayers had gotten results. When you begin to tick ‘answered prayers’ on your past prayer list, you would be encouraged to pray more and be consistent with your prayer life.
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6. Have a Prayer Partner
“Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work: If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!” (Eccl 4:9-10NIV).
Certainly, two are better than one!
The bible says, because they’ll have a better result.
Also, they’ll be able to help each other up when needed.
We get better encouragement when we perform tedious activities with loved ones. Having a prayer partner of like passion will help you develop a habit of prayer and thus make you develop a consistent and effective prayer life.
Paul and Silas were a prayer partner at a point in their lives. And their partnership in prayer brought about a miracle.
“About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them. 26 Suddenly there was such a violent earthquake that the foundations of the prison were shaken. At once all the prison doors flew open, and everybody’s chains came loose.” (Acts 16:25-26NIV)
Another example is Peter and John. “Now Peter and John went up together into the temple at the hour of prayer, being the ninth hour.” (Acts 3:1KJV)
Your prayer partner could be your spouse, a friend, a colleague, or even your child/children. Just be sure your partner has a desire to deepen his/her prayer life too.
7. Be Accountable
Being accountable may not be the popular thing to do in this generation of ‘selfism’, as everyone wants to do whatever they want and whenever they feel like.
Accountability is one of the reasons for mentors to lead, guide, cheer, and challenge. This is certainly not limited to the business world and career. It extends into spiritual matters.
Having someone to help you stay on track in your decision to develop a consistent prayer life is very important. Yes, you may not need this anymore once you have the kind of prayer life you desire. For a start, you may need to be accountable.
You probably need someone you’ll be accountable to, to have somebody give you a push when you’re relaxing; or someone to cheer you up as a form of encouragement as you’re meeting up with your desire to have a vibrant prayer life.
This person doesn’t necessarily have to be around. It could just be someone you can reach regularly on phone, and/or occasionally meet for a coffee. This person should be someone you can be opened to and allow to help you when needed.
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8. Pray Without Ceasing
The bible says “Pray without season”.
That was a mistake.
It’s actually, “Pray without ceasing”.
But wait a minute!
Both are correct!
We are admonished to pray without stopping; which could also mean praying all season. Pray every time.
So, it’s fine to say “Pray without season and Pray without ceasing“.
This however should not be mistaken to mean that you stop every other activity and just be on your kneel for 24 hours praying for 365 days and the rest of your life.
What it means is that prayer can become part of you. Such that you pray while you do all that you need to do.
The consciousness of the presence of the Holy Spirit should make you mutter some words to him now and then. By doing this, you’re already practicing consistent prayer life.
In our definition of prayer, remember we established that prayer, as communication with God, goes beyond mere talking to God, to walking with God. We went further to emphasize that prayer is simply an interaction with God.
To press further in that line, prayer is beyond just choosing a time to talk with God. It extends to relating with God as your always-available companion. It involves interacting with the Holy Spirit at intervals as you go about your daily business.
You can relate to Him while in the bath preparing to go to the office.
It’s also a good time while you’re in the traffic during ‘rush hour’ on your way home.
You can simply say “Help me Lord” while you walk down to the board room, or whisper “Thank You” to Him as your colleague gives a thumb-up for a well-presented speech.
It’s about making Him get involved in all your activities throughout the day. This is how to develop an effective prayer life.
For clarity, this is not against having a prayer time as stated above. Making him part of your day encourages your relationship with God. Having a concentrated time of prayer deepens your fellowship with God.
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How To Develop A Consistent Prayer Life
There are differences between having a prayer life and having a powerful prayer life. What makes the difference is the power in it.
This power is the essence of prayer. A powerless prayer is as good as soliloquizing. Such prayer produces no result.
You may want to read my article on how to pray and get results. If the prayer is not powerful, it cannot produce any result.
If you’ve always desired a prayer life that changes situations and make things right, you need to keep reading, as this will help you experience the life you’ve always desired.
• Approach God With Boldness
Hebrew 4:16 says, Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.
How we approach God in prayer matters a lot. You may know the steps to prayer, but you need to also learn the attitude of prayer. The bible teaches that we approach God with boldness in prayer.
As you come to God, come boldly, confident, and without any sense of guilt.
If you think you’re not worthy of answered prayer, your prayers cant produce expected results. You have to come as a son, not as an unworthy servant.
As you start your prayer, come with the sense of right to answer. This increases your confidence and helps your faith to receive an answer to your prayer.
In the verse above (Heb. 3:16), coming to God with boldness is a necessity for obtaining mercy and finding grace in times of need.
One of the major parts to play in praying effective prayers is to forgive.
Maybe I should say that again,
Joyce Meyer wrote a book titled: Do yourself a favor, FORGIVE.
If you have any grudge in your heart or resenting anyone, your prayers will be hindered. Forgiveness is vital!
See what mark 11:25 (TLB) says,
“But when you are praying, first forgive anyone you are holding a grudge against, so that your Father in heaven will forgive you your sins too.”
God is love. His power can only flow in the atmosphere and direction of love. You can not have hatred or resentment in your heart and expect that the power of God will come upon your prayer.
• Prioritize His Will Above Your Will
The following Bible passage goes a long way to explain this point.
“… And yet the reason you don’t have what you want is that you don’t ask God for it. And even when you do ask you don’t get it because your whole aim is wrong-you want only what will give you pleasure. (James 4:2-3 TLB).
It’s great to have a desire in prayer, but you must be ready to submit your desire for his desire.
Learning to prioritize his will above your will help you develop a powerful prayer life.
In prayer, God cannot be cajoled to do what you want. He wants you to come to the knowledge of the best he has in store for you. Effective prayer becomes a regular experience as you submit to his will. This is what it means to have a powerful prayer life.
Hence, like Jesus, one of the most important statements you must learn to say is, “ Not my will, let your will be done”.
• Stay Still and Listen
The attitude of total submission to God’s will require that you develop listening ears in prayer to know what he has in mind for you.
It’s true you have a lot to say and can’t wait to pour out your heart desires to him. Nevertheless, It is very important that you listen to His desires for you.
You’ll have a powerful prayer life if you have the habit of listening to hear what God may want to say to you.
As He leads and instructs you, you’re able to take precise actions that lead to an amazing result and eventually the answer you’ve always wanted.
I’ll conclude with the following words:
Understandably, several things are calling for your attention and competing for your time. However, you have to decide that your relationship with God in prayer will not suffer.
With these amazing tips on prayers, I’m sure you’ll begin to see your life getting better as your prayer life gets deepened.