Prayer is fundamentally tied to a relationship with God. Prayer can be observed as endless chanting, repetitive words, or perhaps soulful honest pleading. Prayer can be encased in old Elizabethan English straight from the King James Version of the Bible, but it can also be witnessed as free spirited, emotionally charged exuberance with hands and voices thrust toward Heaven, or head bowed in silent and reverent respect. Of all the myriad ways in which to acknowledge prayer I think it best to recognize prayer as having a conversation with the God of the Universe; to come to Him with an honest and open heart just as a child would approach a parent.
The Bible has a lot to say about prayer. It acknowledges that both heathens and Christians pray, that many Christians are praying incorrectly, and that most importantly God truly desires to answer our prayers.
The Gospel of Matthew notes that even heathens pray but that they pray incorrectly. In chapter six, verse five, Jesus talks about those who like to be seen and heard as they pray, and he calls them hypocrites. In verse seven, Jesus is even more pointed when He remarks that prayer should never be in vain repetition as many heathens are inclined to pray. In The Book of James, the fourth chapter, verse three, Christians are told that they ask and don't receive because they ask improperly or wrongly. These biblical cautions regarding prayer are critical with respect to God's will toward effective prayer because He assures Christians everywhere that all His promises are yes and so be it in answer to prayer (2 Co 1:20). That being said, let's look at how to pray effectively.
To pray effectively, the Christian must come boldly to God - just as a child would come to a parent without reservation; Hebrews 4:16 commands us to act in such a manner; "Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need." As blood bought children of the Most High God, let us run to His throne and dance before Him, thanking Him for the blood of Jesus Christ and for meeting our need!
To pray effectively the Christian must have faith in God. Hebrews 11:6 says, "But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him." In other words, when one comes to God in prayer it has to be from an attitude of the heart that shouts the victory; it must be from a position of trusting that God will make a way. Another biblical acknowledgment of faith in God to answer prayer can be found in Mark 11:24; "Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.
One more critical component of effective prayer is addressed in Philippians 4:6, "Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God..." In other words, don't be afraid, but talk to God and thank Him for the provision of what you are seeking; after all, God has promised to meet all of our needs by His riches and glory through Jesus Christ (Phil 4:19).
To pray effectively, do the above at every opportunity. The apostle Paul said in 1 Th 5:17 that Christians are to pray without ceasing. Continually converse with God about the promises of His word toward you while having a thankful heart!
Trust in God, not in a religious manner reciting endless words, but in a heartfelt thankfulness giving glory to God; come boldly into His presence with a belief that you are receiving what you ask for.
If you would like more information about how to pray effectively please visit the author's website at: http://www.PrayerSpeak.com.