12 Steps for an Hour of Prayer...

There are as many "formulas for prayer" as there are people who pray...

This suggested set of steps is offered for the many of us who sometimes get "stuck" and need some help, some structure,

to move us into a solid time of reflection, petition, and plain ol' conversation with our Lord...

My hope is that it helps, especially when the dry seasons come and a little guidance helps to get you back on track... editor

​​Praise   Praise the Lord for His character and for Who He is.  Use His Names, recall His acts, recite the wonders of His creation...

  1. The Word   Read or quote a Psalm to Him.  Visualize the psalmist's intent; see His works through the psalmist's words; put yourself in the psalmist's place and pray/talk to the Lord through the Psalm.

  2. Meditation and Memorization   Quitely think through a passage of Scripture, perhaps the Psalms above or some other important passage you've read back to Him.  Consider placing your name in the place of those spoken to, and reflect what this passage may have meant when written, in context with other passages around it as well as the history of the times.  Sense the implications of the passage and how it might affect you today.  Consider how it might be used to guide you to either do, or not do, some thing which may please, or not please, the Lord.  Perhaps by following other Scriptures which come to mind, you might sense a pattern and an answer to a question or perplexing problem.  This part of your hour of prayer is so very important, since the engrafting of the Word and seeing the meanings and directions within can give you a sense of what is the mind of Christ and God the Father in any situation.  

  3. Confession   Own up to the sins of which you are aware.  Name them, sense the grief they give the Father and ask forgiveness for the choice to follow your flesh and not His ways.  If you are in a group, take care to be appropriate~ consider the audience.  

    1. If you have a problem with a brother or sister, now is the time to have a private audience with that person and ask their forgiveness.  Matthew 18 provides the steps for proper reconciliation.  

    2. Whether the brother or sister can free you through forgiveness at that moment is their choice and struggle.  Bring up no blame, and own your part.  Name the sin, acknowledge the harm involved, and ask forgiveness.  Then allow them the time to process.  (Know that 1 John 1:9 makes clear that when we ask forgiveness of the Lord, He is faithful and just to forgive us of both what we know and what we did not realize was a sin.)

  4. Intercession     Beseech the Lord on behalf of others; pray for hope, truth, and revival to fill the hearts of believers.  Ask that His power and love open, enlighten, and soften the hardened hearts of unbelievers, so they, too, might be filled with hope and truth.

  5. Listen   "Be still and know that I am God"... quiet your heart and mind to hear His voice ...

  6. Record    Begin keeping a Prayer Journal, if you do not already have one.  Date your entries. Write down insights, directions, and rhemas God may give you during this time of prayer and meditation.  You can also add answers to petitions and intercessions.  It becomes a faith builder when you can date the request, record the answer, and have this a record of God's goodness and faithfulness...

  7. Petition   Present to God specific personal needs and desires, placing them before Him to be molded to His will for your life.  

  8. Family   Pray for your family, nuclear and extended.  Pray for families in general, especially for those in your community and nation, and for those groups working to support, train, lead and guide families in walking closer and closer to the Lord.  Pray for the unity of marriages, for singleness of heart, for mothers and fathers, and for siblings to love, encourage, and model Christ-like behavior and respect for the ways of the Lord. 

  9. Church  Pray for the unity and purity of the collective Body of Christ, both locally and world wide.  Pray for your church leaders and teachers, as well as those who work quietly in the local church... from maintenance and cleaning personnel and the folks in the office never usually seen to the pastors, teachers, praise team, musicians and others that are "on stage" and out front... 

  10. Government/Culture/Business  

    1. Pray that both elected and paid governmental workers, from the lowest paid to the top members in every branch (legislators, bureaucrats, legal/judicial) and level, are confronted or supported by God.  Pray they have wisdom from above, and remember that government is to be directed by the Lord to reward the good and correct/destroy the evil.

    2. Pray that cultural and business leaders, and those with power and/or influence in the culture, model wisdom, truth and honesty, oppressing none and standing up for those without power, influence, or a voice. 

  11. Thanksgiving   Give thanks to the Lord for all He has done, and what He has promised He will do.  Show gratefulness, both to Him and to share His "mighty acts" to all the world! 

Another helpful resource is this free download by E. M. Bounds ~  The Necessity of Prayer

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