Many people pray and hope their prayers will be answered, still many believe their prayers will be answered. However, many grow weary when their prayers are not answered the way they hoped they would be. Christian’s are assured in God’s Word and also by Jesus that prayer is an essential part of being a Christian. Those in Christ know that prayers of the unrighteous fall on deaf ears (John 9:31) “We know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is God-fearing and does His will, He hears him – (Proverbs 15:29) “The LORD is far from the wicked, But He hears the prayer of the righteous.”
Jesus was a prime example how to pray. There are about 650 different prayers in the Bible. That number varies depending on the version of the Bible, but in general, “prayer” seems to be referenced over 600 times. Jesus was strengthened by prayer. If Jesus needed to pray to resist temptation, how much more do we? Jesus was tempted three times by Satan. He led him to be tempted in the wilderness, in the Holy City where Satan taunted Jesus to prove that he was the Son of God, and when Satan offered to give Jesus all the kingdoms of the world and their splendor if Jesus would bow and worship Satan. Jesus suffered anguish man times – (“And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.” (Luke 22:40).
Jesus was the Master of prayer and He set the example of how to pray in twelve steps:
1. Confession – (Psalm 139:23, 24) – “Search me, Of God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts, and see if there is any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.”
2. Praise – Praising God for who and what He is. (Psalm 34:1) – “I will extol the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips.”
3. Waiting – Waiting on God – no talking; being “quiet in God’s presence.” (Isaiah 40:31). Psalm 37:7 – “Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him…”
4. The Word – When we pray we are speaking to God. When we read God’s Word, God is speaking to us. (2 Timothy 3:16) – “All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for, instruction in righteousness.
5. Intercession/Supplication – Intersession is praying for others. It is love on its knees. You should have a list of names of others to uphold in prayer. Supplication is urgent praying for others. – “Ask of Me, and I shall give thee the heather for thine inheritance, and the uttermost parts of the earth for thy possession.” (Psalm 2:8)
6. Petition – Petition is asking God to provide for your personal needs. “As and it shall be given you.” Make a list of all your personal needs and check them off as God answers prayer. (Matthew 7:7) – “Ask, and it shall be given you.”
7. Thanksgiving – We need to thank God for what He has done. Thanksgiving is simply enumerating those things for which we are grateful. Philippians 4:6 “Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your request be made known unto God.”
8. Singing – Singing Scripture back to the Lord is one of the highest forms of worship and praise. (Psalm 100:2) “Serve the Lord with gladness: come before His presence with singing.”
9. Meditation – The difference between meditation and waiting is, when we’re waiting on God, we are being “quiet in His presence.” In meditation the mind is very active, pondering spiritual things.” (Joshua 1:8) “ Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. (NIV)
10. Listening – Listen for that still small voice of God; wait for specific orders for the activities of the day – “Ecclesiastes 5:2 “Be not rash with thy mouth, and let not thine heart be hasty to utter any thing before God: for God is in heaven, and thou upon earth: therefore let thy words be few. (KJV)
11. Psalms – Earlier in your prayer time you read the Word and allowed God to speak to you. Now you pray the Word back to God. The Book of Psalm is full of personal prayers. (Psalm 147:1) “Oh, clap your hands, all you peoples! Shout to God with the voice of triumph! (Psalm 95:2) “Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.”
12. Praise – Begin your prayer time with praise and end your prayer time with praise. (Psalm 50:23) “Whoever offers praise glorifies Me; And to him who orders his conduct rightly I will show the salvation of God.” – Psalm 150:1-6 (KJV) 150:1 Praise ye the LORD. Praise God in his sanctuary: praise him in the firmament of his power. 2 Praise him for his mighty acts: praise him according to his excellent greatness. 3 Praise him with the sound of the trumpet: praise him with the psaltery and harp. 4 Praise him with the timbrel and dance: praise him with stringed instruments and organs. 5 Praise him upon the loud cymbals: praise him upon the high sounding cymbals. 6 Let every thing that hath breath praise the LORD. Praise ye the LORD.
Matthew 21:22 All things, whatever you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive.”
Matthew 23:14 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayer: therefore ye shall receive the greater damnation.
Mark 11:24 For this reason I say to you, Whatever you make a request for in prayer, have faith that it has been given to you, and you will have it.
Mark 11:25 And whenever you make a prayer, let there be forgiveness in your hearts, if you have anything against anyone; so that you may have forgiveness for your sins from your Father who is in heaven.
Please look up my poem on “PRAYER” you can find it on my website. Be blessed!
If you want to order book marks with the 12 steps to prayer you can order them at: www.LifeAction.org.