In God’s Word, He instructs / adjures / commands / encourages us to pray. The good news is, This is for EVERYONE! Everyone can pray, regardless of limitations, circumstances, or economic status.
How to pray? Pray for what?
First, prayer is simply talking with God. In prayer, we can praise and worship Him, speak words of adoration, and talk with Him about how grateful we are for Him, His presence, His gifts, and His ways. The Psalms are great for finding words of expression. God’s Word always carries power, and praying God’s Word back to Him carries power.
- Psalms 18.1-3 I will love thee, O LORD, my strength. The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower. I will call upon the LORD, who is worthy to be praised: so shall I be saved from mine enemies.
- Psalms 19.1-3 The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork. Day unto day uttereth speech, and night unto night sheweth knowledge. There is no speech nor language, where their voice is not heard.
- All of Psalms 23
- Psalms 117 O praise the LORD, all ye nations: praise him, all ye people. For his merciful kindness is great toward us: and the truth of the LORD endureth for ever. Praise ye the LORD.
- Psalms 118.28, 29 Thou art my God, and I will praise thee: thou art my God, I will exalt thee. O give thanks unto the LORD; for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.
Be sure to make time for confession and repentance as you pray. Ask the Holy Spirit to search you
- Psalms 139.23, 24 Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.
- Psalms 41.4 I said, LORD, be merciful unto me: heal my soul; for I have sinned against thee.
- Luke 18.13, 14 And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner. I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted.
Prayer includes supplication, which is bringing needs to our Father’s throne. The needs can be for ourselves or loved ones, friends, family, neighbors, community, state, country, and world.
1 Timothy 2:1 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks, be made for all men.
Tools for prayer / supplication:
- Pen and paper (or your smartphone, if you’re good with that): When you hear prayer requests, write them down. This is important, as it is so easy to forget a request. Also very important: remember to LOOK AT your prayer list when you pray and/or throughout the day.
- Quiet time is a luxury for some. If you can squeeze it in, do so. If your schedule doesn’t allow for dedicated prayer time, then pray on the go: driving, waiting room, grocery line, TV commercials, doing dishes, in the bathroom.
- Prayer trigger:
- Think of something (an event, an item) that reminds you to pray for something particular. When you see a pharmaceutical ad, pray for your ill friend. On your drive to work, and you pass a bus stop, pray for someone in a traffic accident. When it’s time for laundry, pray God to quicken and cleanse the spirit of a loved one. When you see a hospital, pray for the patients, families, and workers inside. When you see a fire / police station or vehicle, pray for law enforcement and rescue personnel. Pray for our military when you see a uniform or news spot.
- Set an alarm at a certain time to pray about abortion or persecuted Christians or your country.
- Fellow Christians (Ephesians 6.18: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints. 2 Peter 3.18: But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him be glory both now and for ever. Amen.).
- Pray for your church and your pastor (Luke 22.32 But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.).
- The lost, and God’s people to do His work (Luke 10.2 Therefore said he unto them, The harvest truly is great, but the labourers are few: pray ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he would send forth labourers into his harvest.)
- The sick (James 5.16 Pray one for another, that ye may be healed.).
- Our enemies (Luke 6.28 Bless them that curse you, and pray for them which despitefully use you.).
- Our authorities (1 Timothy 2.1, 2 First of all, then, I urge that petitions, prayers, intercessions, and thanksgiving be offered for everyone— for kings and all those in authority—so that we may lead tranquil and quiet lives in all godliness and dignity.)
- A heart to pray as God wills (1 Thessalonians 5.16-18 Rejoice at all times. Pray without ceasing. Give thanks in every circumstance, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.)
- Friends, family, loved ones (1 Thessalonians 2.8 So being affectionately desirous of you, we were willing to have imparted unto you, not the gospel of God only, but also our own souls, because ye were dear unto us.)
- Jerusalem (Psalm 122.6-9 Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: they shall prosper that love thee. Peace be within thy walls, and prosperity within thy palaces. For my brethren and companions’ sakes, I will now say, Peace be within thee. Because of the house of the LORD our God I will seek thy good.
- God’s will be done (Matthew 6.9, 10: After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven. Matthew 26.42: He went away again the second time, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if this cup may not pass away from me, except I drink it, thy will be done.)
Remember, too, that prayer is talking WITH God. Be sure to watch and listen carefully, because He answers. He speaks to us in so many ways.
Prayers for Self, Spouse, Marriage
Here are some prayers that may help you in your prayer life. They are written from the perspective of a wife. Husbands may interchange intentions and words to reflect their own needs.
Most of these prayers are interchangeable, in that you can pray whatever for yourself / spouse / friend / parent, etc. Use these words as a springboard to create your own prayers.
God bless you.
- Instill in me a love for Your Word
- Show me how you value me, that I may find my worth, my self-esteem, in You
- Be strong in me, that I may let Your strength be my strength, and that I may not be a slave to my own fears or selfishness, that I may go forth and do Your will
- Fill me with Your Holy Spirit
- Show me new and wonderful things from Your Word:
- How I may obey You
- Promises You have for me
- Insights into the way I should live and serve
- Your wisdom, Your love
- I put my flesh to death, that You might live through me
- Give me gratefulness, mold my heart to be more grateful
- Work in me so that my desire to do right is more, and becomes stronger, than my desire to be right
- Thank You for the health You have given me. I pray I would not abuse that blessing, but that I would be a good caretaker of Your gifts. I pray specifically about my eating habits. I pray You would be strong in me when I want to eat too much or eat the wrong thing; make me weak so that I may be strong in You.
- Teach me contentment in every circumstance
- Teach me to be humble; give me a teachable spirit
- Give me Your vision, Lord, I pray; give me Your wisdom and love
- Lord, change my desires so that they perfectly correspond to Your will for me
- Lord, guide me through my lifestyle choices
- Give me discernment as to my daily schedule
- Open doors to those things that are Your will for me: home, family, work, community, relationships
- Reveal my sin to me, and lead me to repentance
- Teach me how to be a people-person as You were: how to remember names and faces and circumstances, how to cherish people
- May I always be sensitive and obedient to Your leading, Your correction, Your presence
- Teach me how to surrender to You, and how good it is
- Being wrong ≠ shameful
- When I see sin in my husband, show me how to handle it according to Your Word; I pray Your Spirit guide me in my words, facial expressions, actions, and attitudes
- Teach me how to forgive according to Your will
- Show me Your intentions for our marriage: I am to be his helpmeet
- Help me to adjust my expectations to fit Your vision
- Give me eyes to see Your blessings, and appreciate them
- I pray You will build up my husband so that no matter what trials come, he will be able to stand strong in You through them
- I pray You would make my husband a man of integrity, according to Your standards. Make him a man who lives by Your truth; help him to walk with Your Spirit of Truth at all times. Be with him to bear witness to Your Truth. Do not let him be deceived in any way, do not let him live a lie in any way.
- Show me how to love my husband so that he never feels like he’s “going it alone.” I pray he would so know You that he would know he is never alone, but that You always love him, cherish him, and are looking out for his best interests.
- Reveal his sin to him, and lead him to repentance
- Teach him how to surrender to You, and how good it is
- I pray his eyes and heart are ever with You
- May he have an obedient heart toward You
- Give my husband eyes and heart for me; give him understanding for who I am, and respect for what he sees.
- Reveal to my husband your direction for his daily and long-term life. Show him how to lead his household. Give him eyes to see You. Give him a heart to receive You.
- Give my husband wisdom in decision-making for our family. Provide wise counsel for him.
- Instill in him a gnawing hunger for Your Word. May he delight in reading it, may it be sweet to his taste.
- Fill him with Your Holy Spirit
- Show us how to love each other in the way we need, in the way You want us to meet each other’s needs
- Intervene in our communication so that our words express truth in love; and give us ears to really hear each other
- Show me how You see my husband, how You love him
- Help me help my husband through his struggle(s) with sin; show me what You need me to be for him
- I see much greatness and potential for greatness in my husband. I pray You will grow my respect for him as I am obedient to You in this, that I may honor and encourage that greatness
- I am to respect my husband. I die to self in this, and submit my will to the leading of Your perfect Spirit.
- May my countenance be pleasing or edifying to my husband.
- Pr 24.3, 4 May we build our house through Your wisdom, establish it by Your understanding, and fill the chambers with all pleasant and precious riches by Your knowledge
- I pray You would remove temptation from our lives. I pray Your hedge of protection around each and both of us. Give us eyes and wisdom to discern and flee from evil.
- I pray Your protection from any accidents, diseases, dangers, and evil influences
- I pray our schedules would mesh
- I pray You bring us good friends, Godly people who love You, in whom we can confide and trust and share and comfort. I pray for Godly friends in couples and for each of us. When our friends are not Godly, not Christian, I pray You lead the words of their mouths and ours, and that You would work through us in them.
- We each have our own pasts, Lord, and lies and truths we believe because of how we were raised and our experiences. I pray You give us the grace and wisdom to put the past behind us; that You would overcome our lies and strongholds; that You would fill those places with Your light and truth and love.
- Teach us and lead us to avoid and put away evil in our lives: media influences, music, items in our houses, people
- Show us how you desire us to handle the resources You have given us to handle: money, food, time, family (close and extended), home, relationships
- Reveal our sin to us, and lead us to repentance
- Teach us how to surrender to You, and how good it is
- May we pray deeply together, regularly; teach us to pray
- Teach us to live as though we are healed, because You heal us
- Pr 19.23 Teach us to live in the fear of the Lord
- Teach us to always forgive each other
We stand in need of Your grace, direction, mercy, and moving of Your Holy Spirit within us, of Your light and truth. I pray for ears to hear and eyes to see You and each other.