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Making prayers more effective
By rmww
12/9/2015 5:20:20 PM
I've been thinking a bit lately about how I can make my prayers more effective, especially as it relates to step work and recovery efforts. Too often my prayers are "routine", and not the heartfelt, two-way communion experiences they should be. As I've considered this, I've come up with a few specific things I want to improve:

* CURRENTLY: When I pray, I tend to just kneel and "make it up" as I go.
GOAL: I'm trying to come to my prayers with real intent, and better prepared with what I need to pray about. I feel that I should at least have a mental list of specific topics I want to discuss with my Heavenly Father before I start, such as what specifically I need to ask for guidance about, and what specific things I need to repent of.

* CURRENTLY: I tend to run through a list of things that I'd like Heavenly Father to do for me or help me with.
GOAL: I'm trying to do better to align my will with His, and seeking to know His will rather than telling Him all about mine.

* CURRENTLY: I tend to jump up and move onto other things immediately after the "amen".
GOAL: I'm trying to get better at spending time just listening while I'm still on my knees, so that prayer is more of a two way experience.

What works for you to make prayer a more effective experience?

Comments:

Thanks for the ideas    
"RMWW,
Thanks for the ideas on the prayer. Prayer has been hard for me lately, probably a reason for my struggles. thanks for asking for thoughts, here are mine.

I feel as though my thoughts are turned toward God more frequently, but I feel like "I am so busy, or impatient or something because I can't or choose not to focus on God's will. I don't have a lot of time spent on my knees, arms folded etc, but I do feel as though I have more times been spontaneously thinking thank you God for this, thank you for warm water to shave with, for a bed to sleep in, even thought it is early in the morning and I don't want to go to work, thank you for a job. This has been a major departure for me. I used to wake up early, in the middle of the night and be upset grouchy etc, but now I feel I have a habit of at least thinking gratitude toward God, I don't know if that counts. I too often find myself not being able to say much in my prayers, because for me, there doesn't seem to be anything to say

I would be curious to know how other people open themselves to God's will. I feel like I am too easily distracted. I guess for me as well is the faith or trust or whatever it is that is need to unplug and completely devote myself in prayer, and wait for his answer. I can't seem to wait patiently for God, that I am too worried about checking it off my list and say hey I have "done everything I am supposed to today" now God has to bless me.

I wonder now that I think about it ... if it doesn't hinge for me on my understanding of who God is, what his very nature is, and who I am. I think for me prayer has been and is still too often as I said nothing more than a task to be done like brushing my teeth, shaving or showering, but unlike these tasks my heart is not in it a lot of the time. I was reading in Alma the other day in which it talked about how the sons of Kind Mosiah and Alma had been successful because they were of sound understanding. I know this is a duh moment, and everyone has probably already seen this, but when I read this, I thought about what it means to be of sound understanding. to be able to see things as they truly are, not as the way I want them to be, or as the way the world wants them, but the way that they are at their very corpse. Like the Savior who was able to see potential deep beneath sin, maybe by having sound understanding I can see my challenges for what they are, not get caught up in comparing myself with others, not beating myself up for "not accomplishing what I wanted, but accepting exactly things as they are right now. When this is possible I wonder if that won't make the prayer thing easier, or I guess what I am saying is as we get closer to the will of God it is not as hard, because we are in union with God's purpose and see the world as it truly is. At that end maybe there is a way of practicing looking at the world for its real essence, disconnecting from the loud screaming messages from the world and seeking to see people, myself as infinite beings. In fact maybe that is what prayer is supposed to be to begin with. Anyway those are just my thoughts on the topic :)."
posted at 20:08:11 on December 10, 2015 by sjanderson1


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"Now brethren, the time has come for any one of us who is so involved to pull himself out of the mire, to stand above this evil thing, to “look to God and live” (Alma 37:47). We do not have to view salacious magazines. We do not have to read books laden with smut. We do not have to watch television that is beneath wholesome standards. We do not have to rent movies that depict that which is filthy. We do not have to sit at the computer and play with ographic material found on the Internet."

— Gordon B. Hinckley

General Conference, October 2004