Prayer is the most powerful “tool” we have to connect with the Father. It is relational interaction with Him. It is not 1-sided. It is asking and receiving, talking and listening. The 1st part of prayer is our part: to ask, seek, knock and the 2nd part of prayer is on the Father’s response: we receive what He gives us, we find what He shows us, He opens doors on which we are knocking. “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened,” Luke 11:10.
It is amazing to think that we have access to God, to His resources and that we move His heart when we pray.
Today I want to share 7 practical ways you can grow in prayer (to grow from where you are now to a deeper prayer life). Prayer is an investment that always bring a reward.
1. Ask Jesus to teach you how to pray (Luke 11:1). The disciples saw the power & authority on Jesus' life and knew it was connected to his relationship with his Father. With all they witnessed in Jesus' life, what they asked Jesus was, "Teach us how to pray". What a model for us.
2. When you ask, you need to walk with the Holy Spirit. He empowers you to pray. Prayer is a journey with the Holy Spirit. He gives you the power to say “yes” to God. (Romans 8:26-27)
3. Find your rhythm of prayer, which include the following:
4. Commit to the long haul (long obedience in the same direction). To establish a prayer life or to establish a deeper prayer life takes commitment. And momentum builds over time. One direction for a long time will grow the momentum. As you begin, train yourself to new cravings/habits/desires. They don’t just happen overnight. What new habits are you wanting to create in the place of prayer?
5. Understand the power of distractions. Be intentional because sometimes prayer is boring and distractions are everywhere. We have short attention spans and are very connected to distractions. Resist the distractions! Shut the door to anything that would come to take you out of the moment with the Father. Matthew 6:6, “But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to the Father, who is unseen. Then your Father who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” This is a promise. You can increase your attention span in prayer!
6. Just do it! PRAY! The increase of depth in your prayer life comes from doing it. You won’t grow in prayer by reading about it or listening to a sermon about it. :)
7. Get around those who love to pray! Watch and listen to them so you can gain language of the Word (to pray the Word back to the Father). A deeper love for God & others comes from prayer as you see His heart for the world through the Word and intimacy with Him.
I have written a devotional book called A Call to the Secret Place. This is a great resource to help you get consistency with a secret place time. The hidden place with God is where your roots begin to grow deep. It is the secret place that becomes a chamber of encounter with God. He longs for relationship. He pursues you. He chases after you and calls you to draw near to Him. Psalm 27:8 says, "My heart has heard You say, 'Come and talk with Me. And my heart responds, 'Lord I am coming.'" This is the call to the secret place. Let your heart be drawn by His whispers to go with Him where others don't see~ into the hidden place.