Many of us pray when we or family, or a close friend, are upset, hurt, sick, or unemployed. But God wants to hear from us during the good times too.
Prayer should not be just “Help me” prayers. If a friend only hears from you when you need something, you may lose a friend, or they might just avoid your phone calls.
If you don’t want God to “avoid your phone calls”, by not answering your prayers, then you need to pray even when you are not desperately in need.
Prayers of thanks can be a daily time to appreciate all God does for you. I pray every day, but saying “thank you” to God actually makes me feel happier. A prayer of hello every morning puts God first in my mind and in the start of my day. Both of these prayers let God know that you are listening to Him.
I believe that with so many serious problems in the world today, that we all need to be praying beyond our family and friends. Pray for your neighborhood and the people who live there. Pray for your city, and the decision makers in city government. Pray for your state, and the state government.
Pray for your country, the leaders, the military, and the Supreme Court.
When we complain about government decisions or lack of action, we need to pray about it. Complaining does not change anything. I know this, but I still find it hard not to complain. I wonder if I can remember to say a prayer over each complaint. That’s a good challenge for me, because complaining is just a waste of time, but prayer changes things!
Be patient waiting for God to answer your prayers.
Don’t lose your faith just because the answer takes a long time. I have felt great joy when a prayer is answered even if it took several years to see the results! It is helpful to remember there may be other factors and other people delaying the results. God won’t force people to do something they don’t want to. He may need to nudge people several times if they are procrastinating or reluctant to comply. There may be a series of events that must happen before your request can be granted. Be patient with God; He is always patient with you.
Even if God answers your prayer with a “no”, thank Him for listening, and ask Him again if it is very important to you, or ask Him to help you accept the “no” answer. Yes, I have gotten my share of “no’s” from God, but I have also had many prayers answered, some in amazingly awesome ways that I never could have expected!
How much time do we need to spend in prayer?
Most of us do not pray enough. I know I don’t. So I think we all need to pray more. There are some people who spend 3 hours praying on certain days, like Saturday or Sunday. Most of us can’t pray that much at one time, but we can pray more than we are now. For example, if you add 5 minutes in the morning when you wake up, 5 minutes during lunch, 5 minutes while driving, 5 minutes before dinner, and 10 minutes before bed. That alone, adds 30 minutes of prayer to your day.
So I am giving myself the challenge to stop and pray for 5 minutes several times each day. I challenge you to do the same.
The amount of time we pray is not the issue. What is important is that we take the time to pray at various times each and every day. God needs to be on our mind and in our heart every day. You just might get more results from your prayers.
If you want something to encourage you to pray more, I highly recommend the movie “War Room”. It is now available in DVD and Blu-ray. My husband and I saw the movie at the theater, and liked it so much, we bought a DVD copy. The movie is about a family falling apart, and about the battle all Christians fight.