Our experience as Christians confirms that there is a fierce battle in this universe between God and Satan, and particularly when we want to pray there are so many things and people and situations that rise up to not let us pray.
As lovers of Christ we want to pray, we desire to pray, and we even set some time aside just to pray, but every time we do this Satan comes in and bothers us, distracts us, and wants to steal our time of prayer away.
As we see this happening, we need to make a vow to the Lord concerning our prayer life, opening to Him and asking Him to help us, remind us, and strengthen us to have a healthy habit of prayer.
To have a life of prayer actually is to have a habit of living Christ. We need to tell the Lord that we fully depend on Him to bear the responsibility for our prayer life, so we want to cooperate with Him and be reminded by Him to pray. We trust in the Lord, depend on Him, embrace Him, rely on Him, cling to Him, and cleave to Him to remind us about our prayer life.
Then, we need to take some practical steps to build up a habit of prayer by setting some definite times aside to pray, and fight for these times!
Just as Daniel had the habit of serving the living God through his habitual 3-times a day prayer (Dan. 6:10), so we as New Testament believers need to set at least three times a day to spend with the Lord in prayer.
Making a Deal with the Lord about Our Prayer Life
If you didn’t realize yet that you can’t do it in yourself and with your own strength, then you will still try to have times of prayer and fail. We need to first of all come to the Lord and make a deal with Him concerning our prayer life.
Open to Him about this, and pray to Him in a definite way. Here’s a prayer that we all can pray,
Lord, I mean business with You about this matter of prayer. I call heaven and earth to witness that from this time forth I will have a life of prayer. I will not be a prayerless person. Rather, I will be a praying person.
We really mean business with the Lord in this matter! We want to even make a vow to Him, in which we don’t “promise Him we pray all day long” but we ask Him desperately to help us in our prayer life. Why not pray like this,
Lord, I am desperate about this. I offer myself to You so that I may have a prayer life. Lord, keep me in the spirit of prayer. If I forget this or neglect this, I know that You will not forget it. Remind me again and again about prayer.
We may even forget about this kind of a prayer, but the Lord will not. As long as we open to Him and give Him ground in our being, He will come in and remind us to pray.
We hand over the responsibility to God, abandoning ourselves in His hands, and asking Him to not let us go but remind us and embolden us to pray.
If we don’t make a vow to the Lord concerning our prayer life, if we don’t pray in this way to the Lord, there’s a very little chance that we will have a prayer life at all!
Setting Aside Definite Times of Prayer
After we make such a vow to the Lord concerning prayer, we need to set aside some definite times of prayer.
We shouldn’t be on the extreme, either trying really hard to have a life of prayer yet without making a vow to the Lord, or making a vow to the Lord yet without taking practical steps to have a prayer life.
Rather, after making a deal with the Lord concerning our prayer life, we need to set aside some periods of time during the day for prayer.
It is good to set aside at least 10 minutes in the morning, before all things, to pray. In this time of prayer our top priority should be prayer. We need to be serious about this and have the attitude that prayer is the most important business for us, and nothing should be allowed to interfere with it.
Set aside 10 minutes in the morning, 10 minutes around lunch time, and at least 10 minutes in the evening. You know your schedule, and you know that there are some slots of time that can be set aside for prayer.
Dedicate at least 30 minutes per day to prayer, spreading it throughout the day so that you would learn to stop everything and pray. Regarding our prayer times we need to be strong, serious, and persevering.
We should not delay our time of prayer, nor should we neglect or skip it. Rather, as we vowed before the Lord, we need to pray ourselves into God and persevere in prayer!
Redeem the Time, for the Days are Evil!
It is such a mercy that we can be at such a place and in such a time in the history of the church, where we can pray for the building up of the Body of Christ, the preparation of the Bride, and for the Lord to return soon.
But we need to see that today we have to redeem the time, for the days are evil (Eph. 5:16). Every day is an evil day, full of pernicious things that cause our time to be used ineffectively, to be wasted, reduced, or carried away (note 1).
Many times at the end of the day we realize that we had to take care of this and of that, and we didn’t pray much but rather many things were our priority.
We should make no excuse for ourselves saying, I don’t have time to pray! We do have time to gossip, chat with our friends, be on Facebook and check stuff our friends post, tweet, watch YouTube videos, check the news, etc. All these things take up so much of our time, and we need to redeem the time by paying the price to pray!
Also, there are so many distractions that rise up when we want to pray! This is why prayer is a battle, a fight, a struggle, something that we fail at as we do our best to keep our prayer times with the Lord.
But we need to persevere in prayer, watching in it with thanksgiving (Col. 4:2). We need to make a vow to the Lord concerning our prayer life, and then take some practical steps to set up definite times of prayer during the day.
Lord, strengthen our prayer life. Make us praying persons with a prayer life and definite times of prayer. Lord, save us from prayerlessness. We want to be serious with You concerning our daily prayer life. Lord, may we have at least 30 minutes daily to spend personal time with You in prayer. We give ourselves to You, Lord, to persevere in prayer. Remind us to pray!
References and Further Reading
- Sharing inspired from brother Ed Marks’ sharing in the message and portions in, Life-study of Colossians (msg. 65), as quoted in the Holy Word for Morning Revival on Prayer and the Lord’s Move, week 4 (entitled, Persevering in Prayer).
- Buy this morning revival book online via Living Stream Ministry.
- Hymns on this topic:
# Teach me to pray, Lord, teach me to pray; / This is my heart-cry day unto day; / I long to know Thy will and Thy way; / Teach me to pray, Lord, teach me to pray.
# Lord, teach me each day in Thy presence to live, / From morning to evening my one world Thou art.
# The day approaches; Jesus soon is coming. / Redeem the time; it must not slip away. / Lord, make us ready for the cry: “Behold Him!” / By using every moment of each day.
- Pictures source: with permission via, Inspiration Unlimited (Prayer and the Lord’s Move set).