Sometimes God’s word is very clear, but very challenging. A great example of that is Paul’s simple instruction, “pray continually.” Elsewhere he says to, “never stop praying” (Rom. 12:12 CEV) and Jesus teaches us to “pray and not give up” (Luke 18:1) when it comes to things we are asking God.
But just because it is clear what the Bible is asking does not make it easy. This is not about guilt but heading toward a goal. Having embraced the nerd within a good way for me to think about this is to think of trying to get a high score every day, week or month. Frank Laubach made a challenge to think about God 1 second of every minute of the day.
Here are ten ways to help you increase your score:
- Set up reminders. I have used simple things like my 3 x 5 card plan as a reminder to pray. My wife uses certain times on the clock (for example 12:34) as reminders to pray for people.
- Join a movement that engages your heart in prayer. Part of the reason we challenge people to pray for their pastor and church is the more your heart is engaged the more you remember to pray.
- Pray in the Spirit. Paul says that when you pray in the Spirit your mind is unfruitful (1 Cor. 14:14) which means that your mind can be somewhere else. This means that I can pray while I am doing other things.
- Use social media as set ups to pray. Since you are going online anyway to see what your friends are up to you might as well pray for them while you are there.
- Let news to draw you to pray. If you hear news, whether it is world, national, local or even your office, think of it as an opportunity. Use it as an excuse to shoot a prayer to heaven.
- Pray for needs as they come up. Too many people say they will pray about things and never do. Make a habit of praying for needs that come your way right away.
- Use music to your advantage. If you can have music in the background use music that draws you into the presence of God. When you hear it this may remind you to pray.
- Set yourself up for conversation thoughts of God at night. Reading a little Bible or trying my journal method may set you up for a good night. You may even wake up thinking about God.
- Use daily struggles to remind you to pray. I think it was Rick Warren who said that, “if it is big enough to worry about it is big enough to pray about.” Worry becomes the trigger to pray.
- Start where you are. In this “game” of spending time with the God of the universe it is best to slowly improve your “score”. Maybe pick one of this and build on it. As Dr James Rouse says, “One good habit will beget another good habit.
Make one new commitment today and see where your score will go. Check out my book Enjoying Prayer for more ideas