Intimacy with God

Develop a Plan. Don’t be overwhelmed. Start slow. Keep things simple at the beginning. Most people get discouraged in prayer because their prayer time has no or little structure. Without a plan, you drift.

Pray without ceasing. Praying in the morning in a less than casual way is a doorway to living in an attitude of prayer. Having a time and a place, and a prayer plan are tethers for a life lived with the wind of the Spirit driving our sails.

Just Talk to God! Prayer doesn’t require the use of ‘thee’ and ‘thous’ – nor does it forbid it. However, neither the terms in your vocabulary nor volume or tone of your voice need to change. It might, but even when passion comes to prayer, you should still be you – natural. Naturally spiritual.

Take Notes. Expect assignments from God. Without a record of God-encounters, it is too easy to forget moments you have had – answers, impressions, words and promises.

Pray about Everything. And keep it simple. In the days of Jesus, the Jewish believers had standard prayers for everything – plowing a field, eating a meal, drinking, a wedding, a funeral – everything.

Keep Prayer Happy and Holy. “Rejoice in the Lord, always. Again I say, rejoice!” is the prelude to presenting needs, pulsating painful needs. They must not so overwhelm us to take away our joy. Happy, yet holy.

Pray for Provision. Jesus taught us to pray for our “daily bread.”

Pray for Protection. Never take God’s protective care for granted. “Because he has given me his love, I will take him out of danger: I will put him in a place of honor, because he has kept my name in his heart” (Psalms 91:14 BBE).

Pray for Direction. Ask God to order your steps. Give God glory! Our whole purpose for being on the earth is to give God glory. Remember – Anybody Can Pray!

Partner Praise and Thanksgiving with Prayer. Every need is to be presented with the recollection of God’s actions of grace in the past; every appeal for God’s intervention is paired with praise that affirms God’s ability and character. We enter God’s presence with thanksgiving and we exit in praise.

Adapted from Greg Qualls, “Spiritual Disciplines – Six Tips for Talking to God.”

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P. Douglas Small is founder and president of Alive Ministries: PROJECT PRAY and he serves in conjunction with a number of other organizations. He is also the creator of the Praying Church Movement and the Prayer Trainer’s Network. However, all views expressed are his own and not the official position of any organization.