The third spiritual discipline that I'd like to recommend that you work on is prayer. Spend time in prayer, prioritize prayer, make prayer a habit.
The Bible talks about prayer often- about praying without ceasing, about taking our anxieties to God in prayer.
For me, it's easy to say that prayer is a big part of my daily life, but besides offering up a quick, "Thanks God," or a "I can't find my keys, God. Help!" I sometimes really struggle with having a daily prayer life.
The trouble is, a solid prayer life is a balance.
Having a structured time for prayer, building it into a schedule, making prayer a priority- that's important.
Think of planned prayer time like a planned call to a friend. I do this with my friend Meri. We talk weekly, usually on Thursdays (although that's changing to Mondays... but you get the idea, so moving on). I know that I will take some time out to connect with her- to catch up, to tell her what's going on and how I'm doing and where I'm struggling. We take the time and go into deep stuff.
On the other hand, if we only pray during planned, structured times, we limit our openness to Him. We put Him in a box, or in a prayer corner, or on that one couch at 6:40 am every morning. He's with us, all the time. He's there to talk, all the time.
When I stub my toe and say, "Lord. That hurt! Take that pain away, please," or when my friend announces a pregnancy and I feel that pain in my heart... I can call out to Him. Ask Him for help, for perspective.
It's a balance.
Personally, I tend to be better at the "in every moment" prayer, rather than the "planned and purposeful" prayer.
That's why having a guide is so helpful to me.
I really like the book The Power of a Praying Woman (I got hooked after reading The Power of a Praying Wife)
I've also been blessed by praying the Bible:
The Power of Praying Through the Bible -- I know, another "Power Of..." but I really like 'em!
The One Year Book of Praying through the Bible- this one goes through one year, using Scripture and prayer together to make a great quiet time resource.
How do you stay focused in your prayer life? Do you use guides at all?
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