[This post is a part of the Guarding the Heart power series. If you missed it, you can view it here.]
I’ve always believed that more than having just a prayer life, we need to live a life of prayer.
Some time ago, I faced a great block in my prayer time. It was the worst two days in my life. I was so frustrated that I could not pray. It was like I was helpless. And I have to admit that it happens sometimes. Does that happen to you?
Here are few things that could serve as positive reminders.
What’s for Breakfast? – What you feed your mind through out the day will matter. Prayer is an intimate moment with God. And usually in the silent moments, your thoughts are the loudest. The mind gets to work trying to refresh its memories of the day.
That is why Jesus said, “…shut the door before you pray.” Matthew 6:6. That was not just a door of the room but the door to your heart, shut it from every attraction and distraction of the enemy. It has to be a daily process of guarding! Guard your heart and subdue the desires of your flesh at the feet of Jesus.
Calm your Mind – I have found myself doing this following exercise repeatedly during my time of prayer. I speak to myself saying that these thoughts are not important now and that I’m here now to talk to God. In fact, take a minute to browse through your thoughts and point out what’s causing all that rush of thoughts. Then simply welcome and allow the Holy Spirit to take over your mind.
Each time your mind distracts you, rebuke those thoughts and plead the blood of Jesus over your mind. You will notice that if you keep practising that, your attention span will continue to increase. Remember, prayer is a discipline.
Stay Away from Distractions – The fact that you have to check your Facebook or finish that level on you video game may be a constant distraction. Do whatever it takes to create a distraction-free atmosphere. Do you need to get offline? Baptize your phone in a bucket of water if that is what it takes. To be drawn in God is to be withdrawn from the world.
Be Clean at Heart – 1 John 4:20 says, “..he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen.” Before we go in prayer, we need to have a clean heart. Husbands need to honor their wives so that their prayers may not be hindered. (as in 1 Peter 3: 7) and obviously vice versa.
Don’t take a day, a week or a month to patch-up with someone. Great freedom comes from pursuing immediate forgiveness. Promise yourself to cultivate that habit of immediate reconciliation.
God is drawn to humility. Is there someone you need to ask forgiveness from? Do it now. Yes, Now!
Be Washed - Hebrews 10: 22 says, “let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, with our hearts sprinkled clean from an evil conscience and our bodies washed with pure water.”
Sins always mars our conscience when we come to God. Keep your heart without guile before God so that when you go into His presence, there is nothing that the enemy has against you before God. Ask the Lord to wash you with the precious blood of Jesus.
Repent truly before the presence of Jesus knowing that there is no sin that is hidden before Him. When you are washed by the blood of Jesus, there is no power of satan that can hinder you from seeking God.
Worship is your Key – Psalms 100: 4 says, “Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.” Many times we go to God with a grumbling, nagging, complaining heart.
But it is important that our hearts soften in His love to receive from God by praising him for what He has already done. That worship that rises up from a thankful heart defeats the lies of the enemy that he throws at us.
His Grace is Enough – Last but not the least, seek God for His grace to pray. Is it not a fact that, “His grace is enough for us.”? Have you today asked our Helper, the Holy Spirit to teach you how to pray without distraction? If you will ask, the Lord will anoint you with an anointing to pray. Ask Him persistently for His mercy and grace to help you draw close to Him.
Finally dear friends, prayer should not be a race of time to inflate your ego.It must be a time of humbling yourself before His throne.
I pray that the Lord will set you free from all the cords of the enemy that hinders you from prayer.
Now with that knowledge that the enemy has failed yet one more time, take off in prayer!
God bless you!
What helps you pray best? Is there a pattern you follow? Do share with us in the comments section below.