Early African converts to Christianity were earnest and regular in private devotions. Each one reportedly had a separate spot in the thicket where he would pour out his heart to God. Over time, the paths to these places became well-worn. As a result, if one of these believers began to neglect prayer, it was soon apparent to the others. They would kindly remind the negligent one, “Brother, the grass grows on your path.”
1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (ESV)
16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.
Nothing can take the place of personal prayer. It is a discipline that every Christian has to develop; there are no two ways about it! Show me a powerful man or woman of God and I will show you a man who spends time in consistent personal prayer. As we look towards a fruitful 2024, consistent prayer must be one of the goals we set on an individual level.
Through prayer we get to connect with God and pour out our hearts to him while also listening to his voice. Prayer is so important that the bible tells us to pray without ceasing. That means to always be in an attitude of prayer, to always be in communication with God.
As much as we all know that, prayer remains a struggle for many people, especially consistency in prayer. In this day and age where everything is crying out for one’s attention, maintaining consistency in prayer is quite a challenge.
So how do you and I maintain a consistent time in prayer? How can we pray without ceasing? Here are some tips to help you along the way;
Set a specific time to pray and ensure that you keep the appointment. We are creatures of habit and once we form the habit, it kicks in and forms us. Some people prefer to pray early in the morning, others early evening while others love waking up in the middle of the night to pray. Whatever time works for you keep it. Daniel, David, and even Jesus had specific times of prayer.
The other thing you can do is have a plan of the different things you want to pray for. Write them down indicating what you want to pray for this will help give structure to your prayer.
Keep a prayer journal; it will help you keep track of God’s faithfulness. You will be surprised at how God answers prayer.
Also, engage in spontaneous prayer. There are times when the Holy Spirit will prompt you to say a prayer for someone or drop their name in your heart. Pray for them don’t wait or postpone. Also, there are times when friends or family or church members ask for prayer and we say we will pray for them but we never get to the praying part. Don’t wait, take a minute or two and pray for them when they request for prayer.
Take advantage of corporate prayer seasons like all-night prayers, prayer meetings, and fellowships. Be there and participate.
As they say at the gym, no pain no gain!
The best way to know how to pray is to pray!
How consistent have you been in your prayer life?
What is your attitude towards prayer, is it a joy or a burden?
What changes must you make to begin the journey toward a consistent prayer life in 2024?