Everything feels harder right now. Even grocery shopping requires layers of thought and preparation. My brain both spins and shuts down, depending on the moment. I’d like to offer something in this space that is helpful and true, something that makes the overwhelming layers of processing simpler.
Prayer steadies my thoughts and keeps me focused on the God. I know it’s essential, and I know I don’t pray enough. Sometimes I need built in accountability. Maybe you do, too. So I’ve been working on a series of prayers based on topics relevant to this time using the Lord’s Prayer as my guide. And I am so excited to say—I am going to share these prayer frameworks with you!
Perhaps you like to pray but every prayer sounds the same in these Groundhog Days. Or maybe you think you aren’t praying enough and need a jump-start. Maybe you are overwhelmed with all the need and would appreciate some directives in prayer as you establish a rhythm for it in unusual times. Perhaps you want to partner with others in similar prayers because it will make you feel more tethered to a spiritual community or it will hold you accountable.
My Offering to You
However you feel about prayer, here is my offering: I will post nine prayers over the next three weeks. Each prayer will follow a similar format but will address a specific topic. For example:
- A Prayer for Security (in the face of uncertainty)
- A Prayer for Patience (in the weariness of waiting)
- A Prayer for Peace (in the midst of anxiety or fear)
- A Prayer for Comfort (in the face of grief or loss)
The framework for each prayer is similar, beginning as Psalm 100:4 directs us: “Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him; bless his name!” Each prayer structure follows this outline:
1. Thanksgiving and Praise: The introduction focuses on specific attributes of God.
2. Scripture Reflection: Of course, you can choose to read and linger over any passage of scripture you choose! I will simply offer verses that relate to the topic for that day’s prayer.
3. The Lord’s Prayer: A series of prompts will loosely follow the framework Jesus gives us when he teaches us how to pray. You’ll be able to make it personal.
4. Neighbor Prayers: I will suggest a different category of “neighbor” to pray for each day, from family members to government officials to the poor in your community.
It will be simple and easy to follow, and you are welcome to mix it up or pray at your own pace.
How It Works
There are a few ways you can participate with me:
1) Check my blog on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday for the next three weeks. Those are the days I will post new prayers.
2) Follow my blog (if you don’t already). Each prayer will be delivered to your inbox, ready for reference when you are ready to look at it. I won’t do anything with your email outside of my blog because I realize it is a kindness on your part to offer it here, so I will not exploit it in any way.
I will leave the comments on so we can all see who is praying along. But even if I don’t know you or know you are praying with me, the Holy Spirit does. Through it all, my ultimate prayer is to glorify God as we make time to sit at his feet.
In high school, I played volleyball. Unlike the rest of the team, I didn’t play other sports later in the year. One spring, the coaches plopped me in cross country off-season. I was none too pleased. Some people feel God’s pleasure when they run, but I am not one of those people—not with my low arches, weak ankles, and trick knees. Needless to say, I started slow.
In the beginning, I ran short distances. I could sprint for a very limited time, but the longer distances were out of reach for me. But I kept it up. Before I knew it, I could run three miles all at once. It felt like a miracle, but really, God created my body to move and I simply had to train it to endure, to go the distance.
Prayer works the same way—don’t let it intimidate you. I need training and accountability to build up my endurance in prayer, and maybe you do, too. Here’s the great thing—you aren’t being evaluated on how well you pray. Prayer is a way we relate to God. We can be ourselves—honest and open. It might take time to feel really comfortable with it, but that’s ok. He is always there, ready to listen and willing to respond for however many minutes you have.
So be encouraged in prayer. If you join me here, feel free of all pressure. I hope prayer becomes your joy because it is time spent with your heavenly Father. The first prayer framework will drop on Monday. So would you please join me in prayer?
Did I mention I was excited?
Note: If you are worried about your future, and you don’t know who Jesus is or what he did for you, check out my post entitled, “Jesus Changed My Life.” Then drop me a note and contact a local church!