1. Pray Scripture. Nobody believes God’s word more than God Himself. Think of your devotion as a conversation. First, listen to His word then, like you would talking to any person, respond to what He said in prayer.


  1. If your mind wanders, get creative. Praying out loud can help you focus. Keep a notepad nearby to write down intrusive thoughts.


  1. Use our church prayer journal. Get a copy on Wednesday and use it every day.


  1. Pray your uncensored thoughts. It’s okay for your prayers to ramble, be sloppy, or brutally honest. Prayer is not a performance or a speech. God is not grading you. He is listening to you as a Friend and Father. Be real.


  1. Voice The Psalms in prayer. These 150 chapters speak to us and for us.


  1. Slow down your mealtime prayers. Saying “grace” can become routine and empty. Be silent for five seconds before you begin and think about what you will say.


  1. Send God a lot of verbal “Thank You” messages. Practice 1 Thessalonians 5:18, “In all things, give thanks.” Sprinkle in some popcorn prayers of gratitude.


  1. Set a prayer reminder on your phone. If someone tells you they’re having surgery or a hard talk with a friend, tell Siri or Google to remind you so that you can remember. Let your phone help your spiritual life not work against it.


  1. Quote the Lord’s Prayer often. Let Jesus’s words shape your words.


  1. Get a prayer partner. Tandem praying brings accountability. Look for another Christian at your work or in your neighborhood and plan a brief, weekly prayer time.


  1. Have you tried walking and talking to God? Carve out 30 minutes to walk your neighborhood and pray. There will be physical and spiritual benefits, I promise.


  1. Focus on an emphasis each day. If your prayer lists seems too long and overwhelming, make it manageable. For instance, each Sunday morning I pray for other churches and pastors. On Monday, I pray for missionaries. Etc.


  1. Write out your prayers in a notebook. Journaling can help you make progress in prayer. Don’t be a perfectionist though. Write. Pray. Think. Move on.


  1. Scroll through the directory app praying for fellow members. The Elexio app has changed my prayer life for the better. You can see names and faces of those in our church family. (If you’re a member and do not have access or have lost it, contact Pastor Joe.)


  1. Pray with people, not just for them. When someone shares a burden, pray right then and there. A brief, in-person prayer will lighten the weight.


  1. Plan a half-day-away to pray. Following Jesus’ examples, we should have extended times of prayer in a secluded place. Go to a cabin. Hike into the woods. Sit in a library corner. Spend time with no one but God.


  1. Parents, have your small kids pray after you do. Prayer is more caught than taught. Let your words become a model for their prayers. It will make you more aware and shape them for years to come.


  1. Read a book on prayer. I recommend the Life of George Muller, Practicing the Presence of God by Brother Andrew, and Praying the Bible by Donald Whitney.


  1. Ask others to pray for you often. Don’t let your pride get in the way. If Paul regularly wrote, “Pray for us…” then you can text a friend when you’re in need.


  1. Offer to pray for someone. Here’s an easy way to do it. Say, “I’d be honored to pray for you. Can I do that right now?” (So far, I have never been refused when I offered to pray for someone.)


  1. When you’re not sure how to pray, it’s okay to sit in silence, cry, or moan. Romans 8:26, “In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words…” God knows your pain.


  1. Try a book of written prayers. I suggest The Valley of Vision – a collection of Puritan prayers. (If Mark Allen were here, he would insist that I also recommend The Book of Common Prayer.)


  1. Fast one meal a week. Spend that 30-minute lunch break praying one day. Go to your car. Walk around your workplace. Fasting is not as difficult as we think it is. Try it.


  1. Some prayer beats no prayer. Even five minutes beats zero. Pray today.