Every relationship with God begins with prayer.
When we make the decision to give our life to God, believe that Jesus died and rose again to save us from our sins, and commit to living like we believe, we must seek God, confess our sins to Him, ask forgiveness, and receive Christ as our Lord and Savior. This is done through passionate prayer.
Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God. John 1:12
Every relationship with God begins with prayer and shouldn't stop there.
Once we have accepted Jesus as our Savior, we now have the Holy Spirit within us, guiding us every day. We do our best to learn and grow in God's ways as this new person we've suddenly become, but how do we know when we are on the right track? How will we know what to do, how to do it, or when?
In order to hear God we must open up the lines of communication through spending time in His Word and prayer.
Call to me and I will answer you, and will tell you great and hidden things that you have not known. Jeremiah 33:3
All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work. 2 Timothy 3:16-17
Prayer is not something we do to check a box for the day. Prayer is a primary and necessary means of staying connected, in tune, and in communication with God. When we pray with intention, powerfully and passionately, truly seeking God out we open ourselves up more to hearing His answers and seeing Him working in our life. We allow Him to empty us again of ourselves and fill us up with more of Him. Prayer gives us a way to seek forgiveness, help, peace, provision, and even comfort from the Lord. Prayer is having a conversation with your Heavenly Father.
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Philippians 4:6
Life gets tough sometimes. We will face trouble; He knows it better than we do and tells us to give Him our worries, present our requests to Him, and be faithful in prayer. God wants us to talk to Him and trust Him with our struggles. There is incredible power in passionate prayer. Seeking God out and bringing our troubles to Him is a faith practice that helps us to both act out our trust and faith in God, and also to strengthen it as we break down the barriers and let Him in.
Cast all your cares on Him for He cares for you. 1 Peter 5:7
In this world you will have trouble, but take heart - I have overcome the world. John 16:33b
Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Romans 12:12
Prayer is not only something we do for ourselves or when there is trouble. We should give thanks to God, pray for others, even including our enemies, and praise the Lord in our prayers. How we talk to our Heavenly Father has a huge impact on our attitude and heart. When all we do is bring our wants and needs to God we tend to get stuck in despair and create the breeding grounds for selfishness. When we are praying to check a box we let ourselves become distant from God and it becomes easier for our faith to waver. When we give Him our heart, thank Him even for the smallest things it breaks through the despair, rekindles the fire, and we begin to see and hear Him clearer. When we pray for others we help them lift their burdens and open our eyes to seeing what God is doing in the lives of others.
Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. James 5:16
He will respond to the prayer of the destitute; he will not despise their plea. Psalms 102:17
Every relationship with God begins with prayer and shouldn't stop there. Pray everywhere, in all things.
Putting our heart into our prayers, truly desiring to communicate with Him and see what He will do in and around us will reap such powerful blessings. This is an essential part of our ever-growing relationship with Him and a constant faith exercise. All relationships require healthy communication and this is true of our relationship with God above all others. There is never a time, situation or place where prayer is not needed. No circumstance is ever inappropriate for prayer. You have never gone so far, so long, so bad that He will not hear your prayers and welcome them. Develop relationships with His people as well and help one another lift your burdens and praises to Him. You are not in this alone, and you don’t have to know what to say, but reach out to God from your heart and you will open yourself up to a deeper relationship with the One who is bigger than all of it.
If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land. 2 Chronicles 7:14
Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. Colossians 4:2
Pray continually, 1 Thessalonians 5:17
Not sure how to pray? Try this.
A - Adoration: Begin your prayer with praise. Praise God for who He is. Praise Him with a grateful heart. This aligns our heart to Him and serves as a great reminder why we pray to God - because He is who He says He is. Thank Him for who He is to you right now.
C - Confession: Open up to God about whatever you want forgiveness for. Sometimes we won’t know what we need to be forgiven of but don’t skip this - seek forgiveness anyway and ask God to work in you and open your eyes to where you need to change. Be honest with God about your confessions. He knows all that we do, think, and feel already and bringing it to Him for forgiveness has such freeing and healing powers.
T - Thanksgiving: Thank God for what He is doing in your life, as well as in the lives of others. There is always so much to be thankful for. All we have is from Him, so all we have deserves thanks to our provider. Even thanking God for waking you up today, for choosing you, for being who He is has power and let all the thanks of your heart no matter how big, small, mundane or ridiculous it may seem just flow out to Him. This helps us to open our eyes and see how He has blessed you and those around you.
S - Supplication: Pray for yourself. Bring to God whatever is on your heart for yourself, your needs, your wants, healing, guidance, help, peace. Pray for others as well, bringing their requests to Him. Whatever it is you need or want, bring it to Him. Notice this is the final step of prayer after you have set your heart on praise, forgiveness, and thanks. Submit your heart to God and accept that His will be done, not yours.
'Pray then like this: “Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil. ' Matthew 6:9-13