As a young Christian, prayer didn't seem to work very well for me. In my prayers, I informed God of my situations and asked for Him to help.
It all seemed quite rote and redundant and uneventful. It couldn't be called a relationship because there was no communication back. There was no conversation. Just me talking.
In the church where I grew up, we used to sing the song "Sweet Hour of Prayer." Well, it was not true as I didn't pray for an hour, and I would not describe my prayer time as sweet. Then I got some training from an influential teacher on how to break up an hour to focus on various areas during different periods of the hour. I tried that, and it was still just one-sided. Me doing all the talking. That was tiring.
Finally, 10 years into my spiritual walk, God taught me how to hear His voice. I quiet myself down, fix my eyes on Jesus, tune to flowing thoughts and pictures which are His voice and visions, and journal out our dialogue together. Wow! Now prayer was sweet, because I wasn't doing all the talking. Actually, He was doing most of it!
The wonderful Counselor would speak to me. He healed my wounds, filled me with faith, gave me passion and vision, healed my body and released divine creativity within me. Prayer times became totally exciting and could easily go for an hour.
Learning to hear God's voice happened 40 years ago, and as I have sought God since then, He has shown me 60 ways to pray to release His divine creativity, healing power and wisdom into every area of my life. I have taken the time to write 60, practical, how-to blogs detailing these prayer approaches. I describe them to you so you can try them out for yourself.
You say, "Sixty? I am tired already! How can I learn 60 prayer approaches?"
The nice thing is you don't need to. You only need to learn the one that meets your need today. I have categorized them into 12 topical groups so you can go to the topic of interest or need, scroll down through and find a prayer approach that releases maximum life for you today. You can do the same thing tomorrow.
I grew up doing construction, and I learned how to use a host of tools to build a home. I didn't master all these tools in one day. I mastered them as I needed them. Sure, it was awkward the first couple of times I would use a new tool, but soon I became skilled in using it and it was a great benefit as I built homes.
At this point in my life, I am no longer building physical homes. I am building spiritual homes for myself and for others. Knowing how to pray effective prayers, which incorporate God's voice, vision, counsel, healing power and presence, is a key to building a strong spiritual home to live in.
I offer to you these 60 proven prayer approaches. I have used them all effectively to meet various needs in my life. I believe you will be able to do the same. Some of these prayer approaches have free downloadable music with voice-overs that coach you, thus ensuring the prayer has maximum impact in your life.
Especially check out the prayers under the category, "Kingdom Emotions."
The 12 categories of prayer approaches—with titles of some of the prayers in each category. Click here to access the 60:
- Hearing God by day and by night – Four keys to hearing God's voice, how to interpret dreams.
- General prayer approaches – Lord's Prayer, evening prayer of thanksgiving.
- Bible meditation – "Did not our hearts burn within us while He talked to us on the way and while He opened the Scriptures to us?" (Luke 24:32b).
- Healing the heart – Inner healing, deliverance, language of the heart, cleansing cellular memories.
- Divine healing – Miracle healing, inner healing for an organ.
- Spiritual warfare– Roaring at the enemy, freemasonry, removing besetting sins.
- Spiritual worship– Throne room worship, praying in tongues, soaking prayer.
- Kingdom emotions – Replacing emotions and beliefs, putting on Christ.
- Anointed ministry – Stepping into the anointing, commissioning angels.
- Spirit-led intercession – Binding and loosing, power of blessing.
- Interpersonal relationships – Hedge of thorns, enriching my marriage.
- Business and entrepreneurship – Creative prayer, leaders' paradigm, financial freedom.
I have seen the sick healed, demons cast out, dreams interpreted, businesses enhanced through divine creativity and relationships maintained through wise counsel. I promise that if you try these prayers, they will work for you, and prayer will become a wonderful dynamic interaction between you and God. Try them and see.
There is more than one way to pray, however, "If all you have is a hammer, then everything looks like a nail."
Mark Virkler, Ph.D., has authored more than 50 books in the areas of hearing God's voice and spiritual growth. He is the founder of Communion With God Ministries (cwgministries.org) and Christian Leadership University (cluonline.com), where the voice of God is at the center of every learning experience. Mark has taught on developing intimacy with God and spiritual healing for 30-plus years on six continents. The message has been translated into over 50 languages, and he has helped to establish more than 250 church-centered Bible schools around the world.
For the original article, visit cwgministries.org.
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