How to Pray

mother leading childWhy do we pray:

1. I am desperate, I need help.
2. God invites us to pray or ask.
  • Psalm 50 : 15 and call upon me in the day of trouble; 
I will deliver you, and you will honor me.” 16 But to the wicked, God says: “What right have you to recite my laws or take my covenant on your lips?
  • Psalm 91:15
He will call upon me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him and honor him.
  • Jeremiah 29:12
Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.
  • Jeremiah 33 : ‘Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.
  • Luke 11 :9 “So I say to you, ask

How should we pray:

  • Find a quiet place to be alone with God free from all kinds of distractions.
    • Matthew (NKJ) 6 : 6 But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly
  •  God already knows what you are going pray, so just pray what is in your heart. Not with many words which suggests rituals, incantations, and technique or with an attitude that God is not listening and must be manipulated to answer.
    • Matthew (NKJ)6: 7 And when you pray, do not use vain repetitions as the heathen do. For they think that they will be heard for their many words. 8 “Therefore do not be like them. For your Father knows the things you have need of before you ask Him.

What to pray – Pattern after the prayer the Lord Jesus taught His disciples

  • Our Father in heaven,
    • As believers in Christ, God is our Father. Address your prayer to your Father in Heaven.
    • (If you are not sure you are already a child of God please click on this link)
  • Hallowed be Your name.
    • Your heart’s attitude and what you are about to pray must be in the context that God’s name will be honored.
  • Your kingdom come.
    • Kingdom is the sphere in which the king’s rule is obeyed. Yield your life and your will and submit to God.
  • Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
    • As children of God, our desire is to fulfill the desire of God. We want to ask and do what He desires in our life and not to satisfy our selfish desire.
  • Give us this day our daily bread.
    • Ask what is in your heart. Your need, need for daily provisions, health, wisdom, guidance, protection, your anxiety, need of your love ones, of other people etc.
  • And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
    • We sin against God everyday in many ways, God is merciful to forgive when we confess our sin. We need to show the same mercy and forgive those who hurt us.
  • And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.
    • We are constantly bombarded by temptation, like it or not we are engage in spiritual warfare from the day we received Christ. We are weak but God is strong, so we pray for God’s protection and deliverance.
  • End your prayer by presenting your petition to God by saying “in Jesus name, Amen”
    • Praying in Jesus’ name means praying with His authority and asking God the Father to act upon our prayers because we come in the name of His Son, Jesus.
      • John 15:16
You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you to go and bear fruit—fruit that will last. Then the Father will give you whatever you ask in my name.

The Lord’s Prayer should be understood as an example, a pattern, of how to pray. It is not a prayer we are to memorize and recite back to God. It is only an example of how we should be praying. Is there anything wrong with memorizing the Lord’s Prayer? Of course not! Is there anything wrong with praying the Lord’s Prayer back to God? Not if your heart is in it and you truly mean the words you say. Remember, in prayer, God is far more interested in our communicating with Him and speaking from our hearts than He is in the specific words we use.