1. UNDERSTAND THAT GOD WANTS YOU TO COME TO HIM AND TO BE CLOSE TO HIM.
“You have said, Seek My face [inquire for and require My presence as your vital need].” Psalm 27:8
2. UNDERSTAND THAT JESUS MADE THE WAY FOR YOU TO APPROACH THE FATHER without guilt and without fear.
You can approach God because of the righteousness YOU HAVE in Christ, because of His sacrifice; it’s not based on anything you did or can do; it is completely based on the work that Jesus completed in His suffering, death, burial and resurrection. It is because of this righteousness that you can approach God in complete confidence and trust, and without fear.
“Let us then fearlessly and confidently and boldly draw near to the throne of grace (the throne of God’s unmerited favor to us sinners), that we may receive mercy for our failures and find grace TO HELP IN GOOD TIME FOR EVERY NEED [appropriate help and well-timed help, coming just when we need it].” Hebrews 4:16
3. SEEK THE LORD, PRAY TO HIM, AND CALL ON HIM.
Also, don’t go to Him ONLY when you need something. Spend time with Him just to be with Him - prayer is about relationship more than anything else.
“But when you pray, go into your room and shut the door and pray to your Father who is in secret. And your Father who sees in secret will reward you.” Matthew 6:6
4. BEFORE YOU PRAY, FORGIVE OTHERS WHO’VE HURT YOU.
It doesn’t free them of their responsibility in the matter; it frees YOU.
“So if when you are offering your gift at the altar you there remember that your brother has any grievance against you, Leave your gift at the altar and go. First make peace with your brother, and then come back and present your gift.” Matthew 5:23-24
“whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him and let it drop (leave it, let it go), in order that your Father Who is in heaven may also forgive you your own failings and shortcomings and let them drop.” Mark 11:25
“I desire therefore that in every place men should pray, without anger or quarreling or resentment or doubt in their minds, lifting up holy hands.” 1 Timothy 2: 8
5. PRAY ABOUT ANYTHING AND EVERYTHING.
God cares about everything that concerns you.
“Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.” 1 Peter 5:7
“Pray at all times on every occasion, in every season in the Spirit, with all manner of prayer and entreaty. To that end keep alert and watch with strong purpose and perseverance, interceding in behalf of all the saints (God's consecrated people).” Ephesians 6: 18
"Is anyone among you afflicted (ill-treated, suffering evil)? He should pray. Is anyone glad at heart? He should sing praise to God.” James 5:13
“Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition (definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God.” Philippians 4: 6
“And this is the confidence that we have toward him, that if we ask anything according to his will he hears us. And if we know that he hears us in whatever we ask, we know that we have the requests that we have asked of him.” 1 John 5:14-15
6. PRAY FROM YOUR HEART but learn to undergird your prayers with faith in God.
Prayer books can be very inspiring and they can also help guide your prayers in those moments when you feel you cannot think clearly. I use them occasionally for inspiration but DON’T neglect praying to the Lord from your heart. The Lord wants to hear from YOU in your own words. Try spending time in reading the Word before you pour your heart out to God; you will find that Scripture will guide you when you do.
“Trust in, lean on, rely on, and have confidence in Him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts before Him.” Psalm 62:8
7. PRAY IN THE NAME OF JESUS (John 14: 13-15).
Remember that it’s not just a tagline at the end of your prayer but asks you to understand what true relationship with Jesus is.
8. WHEN YOU PRAY, KNOW THAT THE LORD HEARS YOU.
“When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears, and delivers them out of all their distress and troubles.” Psalm 34:17
“And it shall be that before they call I will answer; and while they are yet speaking I will hear.” Isaiah 65:24
“In my distress [when seemingly closed in] I called upon the Lord and cried to my God; He heard my voice out of His temple (heavenly dwelling place), and my cry came before Him, into His very ears.” Psalm 18:6
9. PRAY IN FAITH.
Actively develop your faith and confidence in God. This strengthens your relationship with Him and creates a solid foundation for you to receive Him and all that He has for your life. Romans 10:17 says that faith comes by hearing and hearing by the Word of God. So we need to read the Word, hear the Word and speak the Word; we need to meditate on the Word. By this, our minds are renewed to think in line with God’s Word, and if we are thinking like He does, we can have assurance that we are praying in agreement with Him and that our prayers will be answered. Additionally, find a friend of like precious faith to join and agree with you for the answer to your prayer.
“But without faith it is impossible to please and be satisfactory to Him. For whoever would come near to God must necessarily believe that God exists and that He is the rewarder of those who earnestly and diligently seek Him out.” Hebrews 11:6
“Only it must be in faith that he asks with no wavering (no hesitating, no doubting). For the one who wavers (hesitates, doubts) is like the billowing surge out at sea that is blown hither and thither and tossed by the wind.” James 1:6
“And whatever you ask for in prayer, having faith and really believing, you will receive.” Matthew 21: 22
"For this reason I am telling you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe (trust and be confident) that it is granted to you, and you will get it.” Mark 11: 24
“And I will do [I Myself will grant] whatever you ask in My Name [as presenting all that I Am], so that the Father may be glorified and extolled in (through) the Son. Yes I will grant [I Myself will do for you] whatever you shall ask in My Name [as presenting all that I Am].” John 14:13-14
“Again I tell you, if two of you on earth agree (harmonize together, make a symphony together) about whatever (anything and everything) they may ask, it will come to pass and be done for them by My Father in heaven. For wherever two or three are gathered (drawn together as My followers) in(to) My name, there I Am in the midst of them.” Matthew 18: 19-20
10. REJOICE AND GIVE THANKS when you pray.
Praise the Lord when you pray! God dwells in the praises of His people, and wherever God is, is the safest place to be for His children.
“But You are holy, O You Who dwell in the praises of Israel.” Psalm 22:3
“Rejoice always; pray without ceasing. In everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
11. PERSEVERE in prayer and BE PATIENT.
Don’t give up. Keep believing, and keep thanking God. Those who exercise faith and patience inherit the promises.
“Be earnest and unwearied and steadfast in your prayer life, being both alert and intent in your praying with thanksgiving.” Colossians 4: 2
"Be unceasing in prayer, praying perseveringly.” 1 Thessalonians 5: 17
"Pray at all times on every occasion, in every season in the Spirit, with all manner of prayer and entreaty. To that end keep alert and watch with strong purpose and PERSEVERANCE, interceding in behalf of all the saints.” Ephesians 6: 18
“…Imitate those who through faith and patience inherit the promises,” Hebrews 6:12
In conclusion, we’ve only touched the tip of the iceberg in this Prayer series… consider this an introduction. I will post more blogs in the future on prayer. In the meantime, continue to press in to God, and learn and practice how to seek the Lord and in His Word to discern His will for various situations in your life. Learn to start praying with Scripture. As you bring God’s Word into your prayers, and you learn to pray in faith, you will see the mountains in your life begin to move.
Everything I have listed above and presented previously are things that I personally have applied in my own life. As a result, I have experienced a whole new closeness in my relationship with the Lord, and I have seen positive and miraculous answers to my prayers. I pray that you will discover the same.