How Should I Pray?

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Praying hands by George Hodan

Praying hands by George Hodan

How Should I Pray?

Years ago, if I felt that I wanted or needed something I would ask my brother and sister-in-law to pray for me. My brother was a pastor and I felt he had a “direct line” to God. Of course, I would only ask if it was very important or something I thought worthy of prayer.

My own prayers consisted mostly of reciting words I had memorized as a child, such as the Lord’s Prayer. If I asked for something I wanted, I left it to chance. I believed it was happenstance if my prayer was answered and I thought that it couldn’t hurt to ask.

My prayers today are much different. Today my definition of prayer is not just reciting words or asking for stuff, but rather it is a conversation with a loving Father.

In my book, Fit for Faith, I follow the acronym P-A-T-H to prayer.

P stands for Praise. Prayer is not just about asking for things but it is about telling God about the things you adore about Him. He is praiseworthy. Many times I open my prayer time with praise, letting God know how much I appreciate and love Him.

A stands for Admit. I admit that I am a sinner and confess my sins. Sometimes I admit something obvious like gossiping – other times the Holy Spirit reveals to me where I have sinned. 1 John 1:8 states that if we claim to be without sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us.

T stands for Thanksgiving. I thank God for all that He is and all that He does for me. Some days my prayer time is spent entirely on thanking Him.

H stands for Help. This is the time when I can ask for His help and bring my requests to Him. I can pray for my own needs and the needs of others.

I have no trouble spending fifteen minutes a day in prayer, especially when I consider prayer to be more than reciting memorized words or just asking for things. I challenge you to spend fifteen minutes each day following the PATH to prayer.

Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful (Colossians 4:2 NIV).

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Prayer is so much more than reciting memorized words or just asking for things. (tweet this)

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4 thoughts on “How Should I Pray?

  1. That is very similar to the A.C.T.S prayer I learned during my confirmation. ACTS is – Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving and Supplication. I really think these types of prayer are helpful because they make us pause and remember that we are prayer to Almighty God. Rather than just jumping in right away and saying, “Lord, I need this, or that” it helps us to focus on Him instead, not what He can do for us.

    Thanks for the reminder Kimberley!

    • Yes, you are right Laura. It does follow the same pattern as A.C.T.S. I created the PATH to prayer to help my children remember that prayer is not just about asking for things. :)

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