What is prayer?

Do your prayers have to be eloquent? Do your prayers have to be memorized? Do your prayers have to be said at a certain time? I would answer No to these three questions. Prayer is a time for you to talk to God and to hear from God. Prayer is a dialogue. Prayer is a connection. Prayer is surrender. Prayer is focused attention. Prayer is an expression of your heart. When I was made aware of the importance of my heart in prayer, I saw prayer in a different light. Prayer is not a list of lines memorized that have to sound perfect for it to be heard. Prayer is an informal way to speak from the heart. Prayer is digging into the depths of our hearts. Prayer can be profound or it can be light. The Bible encourages us to pray all the time. How can we pray all the time if prayer is a formal ritual? The Lord is our Father and He doesn’t expect us to go to Him in a formal and complicated fashion. He is our Dad. He is family and we should be able to talk to Him anytime and anywhere.

Today I want to encourage you to develop your prayer life by making it less formal and by allowing yourself to pray anytime and anywhere. It is not a hard process. You can pray out loud or you can pray in your head. Expect God to be part of the process. Except God to talk to you. Expect Him to make contact with you during prayer time. Make your prayer time a space where you can listen and you can hear. Prayer can be silent. Prayer can be closing your eyes and listening to God. It is a meditation and it is focused attention. It is a beautiful place where great things are being said and amazing ideas are being planted. Prayer is a door that leads to Jesus. Prayer paves the way to more of God. Prayer gives you peace, joy, love and patience. Prayer is a time of impartation. When you spend time in prayer, you get something from the Lord. Direct your attention to Jesus and He will open the eyes of your heart.

“This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.”* Prayer should be approached with confidence. It works with faith. When we speak to God, He hears us. We need to understand that He never turns a deaf ear to our words. When you have that mindset, prayer is an even more pleasant experience. God hears your heart but He still wants you to express your heart. Prayer brings out the fountains of our desires, of our concerns, of our pain, of our most secret thoughts. Prayer is a display of our vulnerability and the expression of our trust at the same time. We present ourselves in raw form to the Lord and we believe that He can do something about it. We believe that He will change us for the better and change our situation for the better as well.

Prayer is also seeking God’s face. It is getting into a zone where we can discover God’s will and God’s plans. During prayer, the Lord shares His heart. This makes prayer a very special time. The heart of the Lord is the most beautiful place to be and when we pray continually, we expose ourselves to His heart. Prayer is meant to be a daily occurrence so we can see the Lord’s goodness and beauty every day. When we sacrifice our prayer time and we substitute it, we lose precious time. We get a lot further from God. Let’s pray every day, everywhere and any time. We don’t have to be formal. We just have to be open and to be willing to speak our hearts. God will always talk to us when we are seeking His face. Prayer is one of the best gifts from God and it is operated by the Holy Spirit. He gives us the desire to pray and He leads us when we lean on Him. Pray away! May God bless you and protect you and remember that He will always love you!

Suggested reading: 1 Chronicles 16:11; 1 John 5:14*; Ephesians 1:18

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