In week two of the Discovering the Power of Prayer Blog Series, my friend and fellow blogger Jennifer Moye joins us to share simple ideas for how you can start praying more each and every day. If you missed week one of the series, you can still access that post here.
“I would love to have a prayer life, but I just don’t have time for that right now.” This was a statement a friend shared with me the other day. She is a busy mom of 4, working full time outside of the home. She is overwhelmed with life and just can’t bear the thought of one more thing added to her daily list. I get it. I think a lot of us are like her. We have somehow gotten the idea that prayer looks like an hour long quiet time, tucked in my war room (aka my closet with the door barricaded shut), and uninterrupted quality time with Jesus.
Don’t get me wrong, this would be wonderful! But if I am completely honest with you – this looks like a good opportunity for a nap. Just keeping it real today.
Ephesians 6:8 tells us to “pray in the Spirit on all occasions, with all kinds of prayers and requests.” While hours of devoted time in prayer are wonderful, scripture tells us to be in prayer constantly and with all different types of prayers. For many of us, the above idea is just not feasible in this stage of life. Does that mean we give up all together? No! Prayer in its simplest definition is simply paying attention to God. Perhaps a conversation that involves slightly more listening that talking. That’s it. No fancy rules or formalities. Just you and your creator talking about the day.
Here are five easy ways to pray more every day. I hope you will find them helpful!
Rise and Shine
You know the how the old Sunday school song goes, “Rise and shine and give God the glory-glory children of the Lord?” There is some serious merit to that! Whether your alarm clock looks like a black rectangle from the depths of Hades or the beautiful face of a snotty-nose, full diapered 2 year old – the best way I have found to start the day is to find 30 seconds to pray before my feet hit the ground. There isn’t a better way to start the day than acknowledging my Savior and taking a short moment to ask Him for guidance for what the day will bring. God equips each of us with spiritual gifts and armor designed to help us thrive in this life and bring Him glory. We must never forget that prayer activates this armor (Ephesians 6). In our daily lives, if we leave out prayer we are walking around with talents and weapons designed to help us fight our enemy – but they are like useless, heavy junk without being activated.
If you work outside the home, this one will probably be easiest for you. This is an easy time to shout out to our Father praises and petitions. Some mornings I find myself in tears standing in the shower.
As the water flows over my face and covers me completely, I find myself in awe that Jesus’s sacrifice covers me from the consequences of my sin in the very same way this water crashes over me. He chose to wake me up this morning and give place air in my lungs – He even chooses me to do His work here on Earth.
Now, if you are a stay at home mom, or work inside the home this one may be a little more of a challenge. Let’s just be real honest – I don’t always get a shower every day – not with three little ones running around. But when I do, you can ride on the fact that my naked hinny will be having a conversation with my Creator in the shower!
Clean up! Clean up! Everybody. Everywhere.
This is an easy way to pray that I found on accident. I don’t know about you, but our home is kind of a mess most of the time. Living with three little boys, a busy husband, and even a male dog – I often feel like I am cleaning up mess after mess, after mess, after mess . . . after . . . mess. . . Can I get an amen? A few years ago I found myself slinging the vacuum around, frustrated with my family for making such a mess and not helping to clean it up – and without even realizing it I somehow transitioned to a conversation with Christ. I found myself sharing my frustrations with Him and asking Him for strength and patience and help.
As I prayed with my Savior, I slowly began to calm down. My whole attitude started to change. Instead of being angry with my family, I started thinking of how they show me love and how God has blessed me with them in so many ways.
Prayer changes things, my friends! So now it has become a habit for me, when the cleaning bucket comes out and the vacuum gets plugged in – prayer time begins. In some twisted and strange way this is making me enjoy housework a little more each day.
Riding along in my automobile
Driving offers me another time where I can communicate with God. The kids are strapped in and often entertained with iPads or a movie. This is probably where I honestly spend the majority of my time in prayer with God. It has become a habit for me to get the kids loaded up, turn on a DVD or songs for them, sit down and buckle myself in, start the van . . . then it happens. A big, deep, long breath — in through the nose and out through the mouth.
Do it with me now.
In through the nose … Out through the mouth …
Some days one will do, most days I need two or three of these cleansing breaths before I can shake the chaos of the morning and just simply open my mind to invite Christ into my crazy day. Then as I put the car into gear, I just begin to pray. Most of the time it is silently to myself, although sometimes it is an audible prayer for the whole van to hear.
The key is engaging in a conversation with our Creator in the tiny moments of our life – because He is already there waiting for us whether we want to talk to Him or not. He sees it all. He knows what is happening. He knows our mess and loves us right here in it. Why not reach out to Him in the midst of it?
Be aware of Him
The #1 easiest way to pray more every day requires no physical action, planning or even time. It’s quite simple actually . . . just be aware of Jesus. Be aware that He is everywhere. He is in the flower blooming on the sidewalk. He is in the traffic jam on the way to work. He is in the sweet soul of your 4 year old. He knows you at such an intimate level that He knows our needs before we even ask (Matthew 6:8/ Romans 8:27).
The times in life when I have felt the closest to God and the most in sync with Him are times when I find myself praying throughout the day, devoted to seeing Him in all the facets of my day (Col. 4:2). When we truly grasp how huge God is and how omnipresent He really is, it becomes easy to start seeing Him everywhere. When our eyes are opened to this reality, prayer becomes a continuous and ongoing conversation with Him throughout your day.
What easy ways do you use to pray? I would love to hear some more suggestions to add to the list in the comments below!
ABOUT JENNIFER // Jennifer is wife to an Airman and mom to three rambunctious little boys. With excitement on a daily basis and grace around every corner, she believes we are meant to live this life in community with others and with the mercy to mess up and try again….and again. Being a mom is hard, but it is also a divine calling we can have in this life. Her ministry to women is relevant and heartfelt with her core passion being that we learn to glorify our God in our parenting, our marriage, and in our everyday lives. Connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram.