What’s Working in Your Prayer Lives?

IMPORTANT PIECE OF INFORMATION FOR FUTURE LIVESTREAMS: I just saw some of you in the blog comments mentioning that you got on the site and it asked for a password and you didn’t have one. Prior to the broadcasts, there is a set up and test-run process involved. The password is so that, during the hours prior to us airing, only the ones testing the set up can get on. Otherwise, you’ll just watch Lindsee or several others on staff getting the set ready and volume adjusted. While the sanguine in me would think that’s kind of fun, it’s not the best way to do it. Grin. The password-only access gets lifted at least 15 minutes prior to going on the air. I’m so sorry if that caused you to miss our time together today. I didn’t know of the process myself or I would have given you a heads up. We’re all just learning here! Thank you, Lindsee and Sabrina for your hard work in helping to make this media possible!

What a blast, girls! If you joined us for our livestream chat this morning, our topic was prayer. Sabrina told Lindsee and I that the number of viewers spiked from 700 to 1400 during the course of our time together. Oh, how I pray that God found joy in it and will use our discussions today to build up this segment of the Body of Christ. Just one person’s effectiveness in prayer touches the lives of countless others.

As I promised you in the livestream, this blog post is for you to share with one another what “works” for you in your prayer practices. We defined “what works” as what produces fruit. We talked about the principle Christ gave us in John 15:2 – “Every branch in me that does not bear fruit He takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit, He prunes, that it may bear more fruit.” The beginning of a new year is a great time let God cut away some things in our lives that are simply not bearing fruit and seeking Him for things that will.

So, have at it, Sweet Things! Share with one another what has been effective for you in your pursuit of God through prayer and in your practice of intercession. (By all means, share even if you weren’t part of the livestream.) I especially hope to see some of you moms of young children sharing practical approaches. You are also welcome to share what challenges you and where you could use some help in hopes that some of your sisters might offer practical advice. If there are more challenges than effective approaches and no one replies to you, don’t be discouraged. It’s not personal. People just run out of time and can’t get to all of the entries. Be sure and read through the other replies and comments to see if someone lends some insight to you.

I am so honored to serve you. May the pursuit of Christ be (or become!) the joy of your very valuable life.

With so much love,



341 Responses to “What’s Working in Your Prayer Lives?”

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  1. 101
    Leah P. says:

    I was so inspired after watching today’s video that I marched upstairs with my 5 and 3 year old little boys and we sat down to read our Bibles and pray together. I read 3 chapters of Matthew and selected 3:17 as our memory verse. i wrote it in the inside cover of each of their little picture Bibles, and then we each prayed out loud. Pray for me that I can keep this up, because that is my plan this New Year!

    • 101.1
      tinuviel says:

      May God fulfill every resolve for good and every work of faith by His power (2 Thess. 1:11). You are doing a wonderful service for your children!

    • 101.2
      Mary says:

      Leah~praying you can keep it up with your children. I only wish I could have that time back again and have a do over with my children. I pray you will be able to continue this time with them.

  2. 102
    Stehanie Jo says:

    I wasnt able to attend the live stream today but so enjoyed watching it now!!!Thanks for the ideas and encouragement!! Gods been speaking to me on my need for a more “formal time”. Blessings

  3. 103
    Renee says:

    Loved it!! I am a school teacher so could only watch the last 7 minutes; more than that and I wouldn’t be doing my job! But girls, I was down on my knees in prayer … Right there with kids in the room!! My students are Muslim, Hindi, Christian, and no religion at all. Anyway, I had the afternoon off and on the way to my car I talked to God OUTLOUD!! So cool … I started laughing with him; we had the best time!

    • 103.1
      Alicia says:

      I am a teacher too! I was on my lunch break, checked my facebook, and was reminded of the live-stream. I missed the first five minutes, but I got to watch the rest. When I got home, I watched it again. It was very cool to watch it on my cell while at school. The timing was perfect! I think it’s great that you were on your knees with kids in your room. I’ve been able to lead a few kids to Christ in my (public) classroom. I’d rather do that and lose my job than keep quiet when kids ask questions and them spend eternity without Jesus.

  4. 104
    Beth says:

    One thing I started last year was something I learned in the “Anointed, Transformed, Redeemed”. Ironically, it was in Beth Moore’s section. She talked about choosing 10 verses to pray over your family for the year. I chose a few verses for my immediate family, my husband’s immediate family and then for my husband and I. Then I started thinking that I want to pray scripture over my friends. I asked each of them to pick a verse they wanted me to pray over them. I wrote their name and the verse they chose in a notebook and prayed that for the entire year. I am doing it again this year as well.

    2. FASTING (not just food)
    In a time that I needed to hear God specifically on an issue, I was convicted to fast. Its hard to fast when you have a family b/c not all of them may want to do it. So, I chose to fast from Facebook. It consumes a lot of my time and I really enjoy seeing what is going on in the lives of my friends. I fasted 7 days. I needed to put my family first and not be so involved in friends. It was incredible! Every time I wanted to log in or look at someone’s page, I prayed. I listed about 5-7 specific prayers in a journal and kept it with me at work. It was INCREDIBLE what God did on a daily basis….what He showed me that I may not have taken the time to see!

    • 104.1
      tinuviel says:

      That’s a great idea about picking a verse to pray for family and friends over an extended period of time. I often pray for specific people from my day’s Scripture reading but not a verse matched with a person over a full year. Thanks for that!

    • 104.2
    • 104.3
      Jennifer says:

      Beth, I love your Facebook fast. That is a great idea. I too struggle with not always being 100% with my family and having my nose in the computer more frequently than I find to be healthy. This is an excellent way to think outside the box and honor God with our prayers every time we desire to be on the internet.

    • 104.4
      Emilee C. says:

      Thanks for taking the time to share, Beth! I hope to send my brothers and sisters a message asking them what verse they want me to pray over them this year and season specifically. LOVE this. 🙂

      • Emilee C. says:

        I sent “the message” asking them what verses they would like to “claim.”
        Although I still have others seeking theirs it has been a true blessing… It allowed them to open up about this season. Also allowing me to do the same. He is working!! 🙂

        • Beth says:

          I love it! I’m so glad its working for you too. Its a great way to pray, especially when you really don’t know WHAT to pray! Plus, its so fun to look back at the end of the year and see how God used that verse in their life.

  5. 105
    Laura says:

    “Too Busy Not To Pray” by Bill Hybels is a book that I have gone back to a lot in the strategy that it offers. Also, I downloaded the prayer books for “Power of a Praying Woman, Wife and Mother” on the Nook app on my phone. I use it to pray while I dry my hair in the mornings! It helps. I struggle with consistency but have found these to be very valuable.

  6. 106
    Leslie says:

    What helps spur me on in prayer is taking the time to look back on the times where I know that things happened or didn’t happen because of someone’s prayers over me.

    Looking back on answered prayer reminds me that prayer changes things. Changes minds. Changes hearts. Changes people. Changes me. That makes me want to pray even more!

  7. 107
    Steph says:

    Hi Beth,
    Thanks for the great livestream. Is it possible to see a closeup on your prayer journal pages (the ones you designed yourself)? I’d love to do that type of thing, but it was fuzzy on the video. Thanks!

  8. 108
    Meg says:

    I find that waking up and reading a psalm RIGHT AWAY gives me a focus and often a scripture to muse on during the day. Also it makes me nicer to the littles. And then at the end of the day, I make myself write down three things I am thankful for. Sometimes I have more than three, sometimes I am hard pressed to find even one and then make the other two things like “am still alive” or “ate lunch” or something. His grace if sufficient, don’t you know. Both those things give me an attitude of prayerfulness and then I sort of just, pray all through the day.

  9. 109
    Mary Watkins says:

    I just finished reading the biography of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. What a prayer warrior in the darkest times. I think prayer affirms our faith in a living God who cares for each one of us.

  10. 110
    Cheryl says:

    Sisters in Christ,
    I am asking for help in protecting our children. I don’t know if you have ever seen a Cosmopolitan magazine, but they are at checkout counters of Walmart and CVs. They headlines are definitely not appropriate for children to be exposed to. I have written and called each company, even going so far as to write the headlines, thinking that they may not be aware of the sexual nature. I don’t think I am making much progress. If you are concerned about what we are exposing our children to, would you please write CVS and Walmart expressing your concern? I think we can make a difference and protect our children.

  11. 111
    Stacey says:

    I thought I’d mention this because I know Beth is too sweet to mention it. Shouldn’t people stop all the chatting while Beth is speaking? It seems so rude. We wouldn’t talk outloud like that so why should be be chatting so. I could hardly listen for all the chatting going on. 🙂 Maybe Lindsee or Sabrina should mention this before the next one. Otherwise I really enjoyed this and appreciate it.

    • 111.1
      Bonnie Wallace, Charleston, SC says:

      LOL! I think the chat line proves that there is an OVERWHELMING desire for our community to just hang out & chat! WOW … I could hardly keep up with the fast scrolling! 😀

      But I agree, for this curly blonde girl it was distracting to stay focused on what Mama Beth was teaching. I don’t know if regulating boundaries is necessary, but next time I’m not going to bother with the chat until after the teaching is done. 😉

  12. 112
    Alicia says:

    The timing of the live-stream was amazing for me today. I’m a teacher, and I was able to watch it on my cell phone during lunch. Our church is about to start a 21 day fast, and I know I need to make changes in my prayer life, so this was great. I’ve tried the traditional prayer journal, but I never kept it up because I felt like I had to write out every prayer, and that took too much time. I love the idea of boxes or categories in a journal. I think that will work for me, so I plan to make one before our fast starts on Sunday. I also did a year through a gratitude journal where I wrote 5 things I was grateful for each evening. I kind of turned those into prayers/praises, and that was really good. Thanks for today, Beth!

  13. 113
    To Know Him says:

    Wonderful webcast… I caught the recorded version… Beth when you prayed today for a 45 year old that has just never really got her prayer life down (somewhat steady) that was me… I am not 45, but pretty close 41. Developing and maintaining a consistent quiet time is my number 1 goal of 2012…today’s livestream was a perfect way to encourage me with that goal… Love ya so… Kim

  14. 114
    Jennifer T says:

    Bless you, Beth, and LPM for doing this livestream and allowing a forum for sharing tips and encouragement regarding prayer. I have little ones that rise with me but, honestly, I’m also just plain lazy and love my bed too much, so I’ve allowed myself to fall into bad morning habits. (You have no idea how much I’m looking forward to my ONE morning solo with Jesus in Houston a week from Saturday!!) Here are my main tips and they keep me praying a lot during the day:
    *I schedule special requests in my phone calendar (so my Passion pray-ees are scheduled daily until Feb 7 for now and my one friend’s trip is on for this weekend). Here’s the trick there… I can easily blow off the reminder chime but whenever I LOOK at my calendar I just lift their names to the Lord and pray He does what only HE can do in their lives. It’s like 15 seconds of power-prayer, which is often all I have.
    * I make a lot of mental ‘association’ reminders. Passing a Starbucks often reminds me to pray for a certain Siesta out there. And HAIR PRODUCTS often inspire me to pray for another… and it’s not even our Siesta Momma! Watching the news at night triggers prayers for our nation and its leadership – and potential new leadership. You all get the idea. Patsy Clairmont once wrote “Every time we think of God it is because He first had us on His mind.” I figure every time another is on my mind the Holy Spirit put them there so I better pray.
    * I tend to pray THEN AND THERE with folks who tell me what’s on their plate. On phone calls; in the grocery store; in a parking lot – anywhere. And this has been with folks who seconds earlier were strangers. Um – that was only twice. Please don’t be afraid of me! The deal is I don’t want to risk forgetting the issue and it just opens the floodgates of heaven. I always ask if I may pray for them and never ever has anyone done anthing but say “PLEASE!” My kids are often present and I think it’s important they see prayer as a regular part of our day and praying with/for others WITH them as normal as well.
    * Emilie Barnes – an organizer woman who wrote a bunch of books I’ve ever only partly read gives a great description of a prayer notebook and prayer basket. The idea is that a notebook divided up by ‘prayer focus’ just like Beth’s is in the basket, along with a bible, TISSUES (I loved that), and little note cards so you can write to folks then and there should the Spirit inspire you to do so. You can cart this thing to any corner of your house so all your stuff is ready at your fingertips. This was a great tool for me with my first child and now the basket just makes me smile when I see it over in the corner. I use my phone Bible app and other Bibles in my house now and the notebook system was too hard for me to keep updated. That’s when I went to calendar reminders.
    * Joy Lamb wrote “The sword of the Spirit The Word of God – a handbook for praying God’s word”. I just grab it when I think of a particular couple in duress or a person with cancer – whatever – and flip to the heading that covers that area. I’m able to find one or two passages that immediately address the issue (Is not my word like fire… like a hammer that breaks a rock in pieces!? Jeremiah 23:29) Because I’m going for the bukkseye in prayer so I just want laser focus the word on the issue and then I allow the Spirit to lead me as I intercede from there.
    * I pray with my kids all the time. They’re with me all the time so I may say “Thank you Lord for my friend Catherine” in front of them but my heart is laying what I know to be her deeper concerns at the Lord’s feet.
    Sorry for the long response. The deal is that I’m a scatter-brained distractible mom of three young kids that keeps foolishly choosing her pillow over morning quiet-time. Oh, and I happen to be homeschooling. So I’ve had to get GOOD at praying on-the-fly.
    And yes, I do get on my face – often when folding laundry as the kids are almost always quiet then I do that. He has placed me in a beautiful place of intercession for many and I marvel because so much is inconsistent in my life. I’m just OPEN and AVAILABLE to him and He and I talk a lot. I love Him! I love Him so much.

    • 114.1
      Jennifer T says:

      I just re-read that long comment – PLEASE forgive me, ladies – I hope it helps some struggling mom or busy young executive woman out there. Anyway, the only spelling error I gotta explain is bukkseye is bullseye — idea being that when on limited time and not the best at remembering the ‘address’ of the perfect scripture for the occassion, this book helps me get on the right verse FAST.

      • Bonnie Wallace, Charleston SC says:

        Love your post Jennifer! I’m encouraged to pray more with my kids, and on my face on top of fresh clean linens! Love your viewpoint on why you have mental associations … that’s the Holy Spirit’s quiet voice prompting us to pray. Thank you so much!

  15. 115
    shannon conner says:

    I have a prayer journal, I will get distracted if I don’t write it down so It’s my “letters to God”-book

  16. 116
    Joyce Bailey says:

    Lord, Bless My Child is prayer journal by Bill/Nancie Carmichael. I have one for each child, grandchild. Recently re-released with new cover, updated. I write in the margins: prayers to God + comments to that child. I hope someday they will cherish their book as a reminder that I prayed faithfully for them. Has various chapters: Lord, bless my child with…opportunity, a grateful heart, etc. These books are a wonderful tool as I fulfill my role of mom, grandma to them.

  17. 117
    Yanna Westmoreland says:

    Beth’s book Praying God’s Word changed my prayer life. I have learned first hand that God’s Word does not return void. Releasing everything to God and using His own Words lifted a burden off of me I can not describe. I am a choeloric who wishes she were a sabguine. Control is my worst enemy! After reading Beth’s book, I made a set of index cards tabbed with prayers for me, then prayers for my 19 and 21 year old, and prayers of praise to God for Who He is, thanking Him…all using scripture. I have added friends, other families adult children’s names to the cards I pray over my own the list has grown to include at least 20 (I name them all). I use them all the time, and have even made copies of the scriptural prayers for other moms, and strangers. One time, I had this overwhelming urge at 4am to pray my cards as I was praying the names all I can say is God placed on my heart to concentrate on one person in particular which I did sobbing. The next day I got a call from a “Prodigal Father” the “Prodigal daughter” had called him. Praying God’s Word works better than anything I know and there is a scripture for everything! Just pick a topic that is on your heart search it and with the help of Beth’s book Praying God’s Word in no time you will be able to pray scripture too. 🙂

  18. 118
    Jenny says:

    Oh girls I love all the ideas! Beth I loved the format you talked about for our intercessory prayer. I am a big journaler but that format would help me make sure I did not miss anyone and remember the activity of God in the lives of my loved ones. Where do you find that format journal? Could maybe Living Proof come up with one?

    I am fairly new to this blog but let me tell you it has become a big blessing and a major source of encouragement in a very difficult season. Thank you everyone!!!

  19. 119
    Denise says:

    Just finished the video, and I want to thank you for keeping me challenged and focused in prayer for 2012.

  20. 120
    Margie says:

    What “works” for me is this…..

    I take my anxious heart one of many places in Scripture and I read it out loud with my name in it or read it in such a way that it sounds like I’m praying it back to God instead of reading what He’s done/doing. I hope that makes sense! (I’m on pain meds tonight!!)

    Also, I’m learning the truest meaning of “Pray without ceasing.” I’m learning to talk TO God instead of just thinking about things or talking about them. I know that countless passers-by have seen me chatting away as I drive through town!!

  21. 121
    Brenda Roberts says:

    Thanks for recording the LiveStream. Saw it on Twitter, was at work and unable to watch so I was able to watch it tonight and what a blessing. I needed the boost to help me be consistant and productive in my prayers. Facedown first! I need that every morning!

  22. 122

    What works for my prayer life is and I know this isn’t the way we are taught to pray
    but I pray like Jesus is my homie when it’s just me and Him. I’m more open to just
    speak exactly what is blantantly on my heart. And I pray that way with my prayer partner when
    I deeply pray. When it’s just me and Jesus is those “just because I wanted
    to check in and chat” prayers.
    However, there are those times where I feel so led to pray
    that I am respectful of it because God asked. It’s a request I take seriously, because I just get the
    feeling it could mean a life change for someone and I have to focus.
    but with my prayer partner I pray so deeply that I always tear up,
    trying to focus on specific theme or verse that’s on my heart and I pray
    for needs I wouldn’t normally on my own. Big list of people etc.
    Prayer is one of those things that help us show we are reactive to things
    going on and that we are active in knowing He is there to hear it all.


  23. 123
    Crissy says:

    Thank you so much for the video! I have a question. I have tried to journal on and off for a few years. I enjoy the format of writing a letter to the Lord and recording what is going on in our family but I am not sure that is a prayer journal. I am wondering if I should do a separate prayer journal or trying and use one. I have small children and don’t want to complicate things but not sure what to do. Any advice is appreciated. We do do a family gratitude journal at our worship time at night also. Thank yo so much!

    • 123.1

      That is a prayer journal or at least what I call a prayer journal, just writing a letter to God like you would a friend. Do it, girl! I started doing this when my kids were little and I’ve never quit and I doubt I ever will, although most of them need to be ripped up and burned, cause I have gotten much more deeply personal with God in the last few years and man, oh, man, I hate to think anybody would ever read them! It’s good though, cause I used to be all very general, not very personal prayers and it wouldn’t of mattered one iota if anyone ever read them. I’m glad I’m finally able to open up my heart enough to get it out with Him, even if I can’t talk to another human being, at least not in person. I can write, but can’t talk. I get to scared when they’re right in front of me. I’m going to have to start doing that soon, though, cause I’m pretty messed up and need some serious counseling. Not that you wanted to know all that, but hey, enjoy, and just be totally real with Him. Doesn’t really matter the format as long as it’s REAL!Do it!

  24. 124
    Connie says:

    For me prayer is done in grattitude and appreciation throughout the day. If all the lights are green on my way to a meeting, I say a prayer of thanks. If I get a parking spot close to the mall, I thank God. I have found that the more my prayers are of grattitude for the blessings in my day, the more I notice how blessed my life is. As I hear of someone who is struggling or read it on Facebook, I stop right then, say a quick prayer for healing, whether physical or emotional and add them to my prayer list for later when I have more time.

  25. 125
    Emmy says:

    Watched today! LOVED every second… Thank you LPM! 🙂

    Relating to Mom’s with little ones… Hope this won’t be too long…

    OH, how I wish I could share my testimony with you all! It is so hard! It is what truly brought me to my knees to know the Lord. I had 3 kids in 2 1/2 years, no twins… then a 4th a couple of years later. I am as unorganized as they come. My husband was also in residency at the time and lived at the hospital. I felt so alone and was so tired and broken. It made me desperate for the Lord!

    I would just plop down with my bible and pray and read in the morning while they played around me… or cried… or tugged on me… or fought with each other… and even in the midst of the chaos God met me. (of course)

    About 3 years later my son painted a picture for me (he is almost 20 now and I still have it hanging up… as an Ebenezer of sorts) It was a picture of me on my knees by the table I did my quiet time on and it said, My Mom loves Jesus.

    I tell you that not because I want you to think I am super spiritual… Oh my goodness how I wish my prayer life was like it was then… but maybe now because I can look back… I see how much it spoke to my kids even when I had no idea they were watching or paying attention. And God SO met me there… it wasn’t always quiet or neat looking most of the time it was a train wreck… but it was a treasure!

    Goodness now they are all teens… HELP! 🙂

  26. 126
    Lori Willey says:

    Assign a person to each day of the calendar. A friend did this and told me I was the “25th”. It helps. You can designate a week to work, or school, extended family, government, church and then designate 7 specific people for that week from that group.

    I will flat out ask Jesus to prompt me with people that He wants me to pray for through my day. When I see them later, and he often makes our paths cross, I can say, “I was just praying for you” instead of “I was just thinking of you.”
    They are thrilled and surprised.

  27. 127
    Diana A. says:

    Hi – Just wanted to say that I tried to watch the video and it said “Off Line” – so no help at all.

    Sorry to have missed it, but God had other plans for me, keeping me on my knees for my sisters in my care group.

    Hope to see it tomorrow.

    • 127.1
      Suzanne in RI says:

      There should be two pictures of Beth at the bottom.You have to click on one of the little pictures. I was able to watch the video much later by clicking on those pictures.

  28. 128
    Holly Smith says:

    I knew this question was coming from this morning and still…I don’t have an answer. All I know is that I pray–all the time–and God answers and hears and directs and leads–all the time. I cannot think of a thing I do in preparation or practice, so that I could list steps or such. But God has time after time after time moved mightily when I pray. It’s all Him. His ways. His how. It certainly doesn’t mean I have a smooth-sailing kind of life–for I don’t. I would only say, PRAY that He will teach you to pray…and notice when He answers–give Him glory!!

  29. 129
    Mikelan says:

    Beth, would it be possible for your team to post the PDFs of the pages of your prayer journal? We are all so grateful for the way that you are discipling so many of us! My college daughter watched this too and we both want to make and use prayer journals this year! Blessings!

  30. 130
    Heidi says:

    A few years ago in MOPS we had a speaker offer some practical suggestions to us moms of young kids, moms with very little alone time! A few of these I still do, despite the fact that my kids are all in school full time now. My favorites:
    — don’t stress out about having to get up an hour before your kids. If you are too tired to take care of them and live out your faith, that is self-defeating. Instead, commit the first 5 minutes of time alone to God each day, and don’t feel guilty using PBS to get it : ).
    I started praying in the shower every day and i still do that now!
    — keep your Bible on the kitchen counter, open to whatever it is you’re studying, reading, or meditating on. Each time you walk past, read a verse, offer a prayer, work on memorizing, etc.
    — write verses on sticky notes that you need to read at various times during the day. “I will walk in my house with a blameless heart” greeted me via the bathroom mirror every morning for 10 years!
    Love all the comments already, thanks everyone!

  31. 131
    Sue H says:

    Beth, thank you for sharing your time with us! I LOVED how you talked about reading Scripture and praying over the requests in your journal simultaneously! I can’t wait to give it a try.
    I do my Bible study in the morning, but I use the shower as my prayer closet. It’s the most private place in my house:) I pray all throughout the day as well. I also have learned to pray for people who God lays on my heart at that moment. I love praying so much!!!!!

  32. 132
    Chris says:

    I use to be committed and seeking, but I have lost my passion and hope.
    I want to start talking to God and seeking Him again. Jesus please help me to
    Surrender and give my life back to You.

  33. 133
    Ashley says:

    As far as intercession goes, I find it’s helpful to ask God what to pray for. If He wants to move, and He chooses to involve us in the process, I think He also just might want to show us how to pray. Also, since we are told to ask in faith, I find it helpful to specifically say, “God, will you give me something I can have faith to pray.” This is for those times when you’re just not sure. We might think it’s obvious what to ask for, but behind the scenes He may be trying to accomplish something through other people’s problems and struggles. Usually if I begin looking up passages of scripture, something will come alive to me, and I can feel my faith rise. And that’s what I pray.

  34. 134
    Diane Bailey says:

    I went and purchased a Mom’s Brag Book and instead of placing pictures of my beautiful Grands in there, I placed my memory verses in it! Then I literally pray the Word! Loved seeing you today and I look forward to the next livestream!

  35. 135
    Suzanne in RI says:

    I regularly (though, not daily) flip through a small 26 page photo album that holds 4″x6″ photos. As I flip through the pages, I thank God for these people and pray for them.

    I include photos of my family, my pastor and his family, our handbell choir, our regular choir, the school that I teach at, the leaders of our youth group, the missionary family from our church, servicemen from our church, etc. I update the photos each year.

  36. 136
    Sharon Allen says:

    One statement which remains with me and has changed my thinking is this,’prayer is not an exercise, it is life’, by AW Tozer. It has become a desire, a need, a beautiful relationship with my heavenly Father which I long for 🙂

  37. 137
    Nicall says:

    I was recently taught how to pray scripture like many have already mentioned and it is wonderful! I know everyone does it slightly different but I was shown to put the verses on index cards and then place them into a catagory – Who God Is, Who Jesus Is, Who the Holy Spirit is, Confession, Praise, Position, Instruction, Help, Assurance, Warefare, Power Might and Glory (all one), Healing and the list could go on. As I find a verse or one is given to me I write it on an index card and file it under the catagory (some verses fit multiple catagory’s) in my shoe box. Then whenever I have a specific need or issue I can go to the most fitting catagory pull the cards and start reading and praying those scriptures. Then take them with me for the day or month or season. If there is nothing pressing on me that day I can just use the praise verses and the ones about God’s character. As the mother of 3 small children it makes it a little easier to be able to quickly find the scriptures I need. It makes it easy to pray for family members as well. I love how God uses His word and how powerful it is.

  38. 138
    Sara says:

    I needed this today.

    I’ve been troubled by prayer not answered (or not answered in my way, time frame, I don’t know what God’s doing but he sure hasn’t filled me in yet) and I’ve found myself in a rough patch. May sound silly, or wrong, or whatever but…I think that when it feels like God isn’t “fixing” something for your kids it’s easy to get huffy. I just love them so much, and I want them to be protected from this situation, and I can’t do it, and He can but it doesn’t seem to be his will. I grew up with a grandma who taught us all that you withhold your negative feelings towards God out of respect and so I’d been trying to do that.

    My preachers wife, who I met outside of church before I started attending this church, and became fast friends with her, and about flipped over when I found out she was a preachers wife (you know the moment where I rewind everything I’ve ever said hoping I didn’t offend her haha). She told me that she thinks God understands our frustrations and our pain and it’s okay to take that to him as well. I burst out crying and she basically drove me to see her husband at church and we all sat in his office while my friend and I bawled our eyes out over this situation, and my pastor said God has big shoulders.

    It’s just sometimes hard to you know, untrain yourself. So I feel like I do well for awhile and then I’m right back into that not praying because I can’t share that with him so I won’t share anything. I’m going to start a prayer journal, or documentation. Something. I think it will help put some focus and perspective in my prayer life.

  39. 139
    Heidi says:

    I need to pray out loud, usually when walking or running. Other times it is out loud while moving about the house. That controls my thoughts to be focused on Him and be available to His leading. Also, using scripture is amazing! Now I tend to ask “What verse would you like me to pray for you?” instead of “How would you like me to pray?”

  40. 140
    Lindsay says:

    This is so bizarre and it is definitely my first ever post on this blog. I read frequently, but have never posted. Quite frankly, I had no intentions of posting anything tonight. God obviously had different plans.

    I was driving home from work tonight and I had a “revie” (that’s what I call it when God shows me something) about prayer. I had NO IDEA what the livestream topic was about until a friend texted me and told me I should check it out. Got online and what do you know? Anyhow, was just settling down in my Granny Chair (I am 29 and single and my GC is a RECLINER) to do some processing. I journal daily. And, hopefully I will share a bit more of what my journaling looks like to encourage others. But, I had a thought (that I believe to be inspired by the Holy Spirit) about prayer and I wanted to sit down and process thru it. Went to get my journal and it wasn’t in my bag. I left it at the office. Great. And then I “happen upon” this and it’s about prayer life.

    I have experienced some difficult situations at work this year. I am an assistant college coach and with precious young women under my boss’ and my leadership, there is no margin for error. Things were really difficult a few months ago and I began praying 3 things over the situation. 1. For Truth. Truth about God, who He is and then Truth about some specifics at work. 2. Protection: for my boss, for our girls, the program, and a few other specifics. 3. That God would exalt Himself.

    I prayed them daily for a period of time when things were intense. And then, it was as if I was “released” from praying them. I don’t know how to explain it, but it wouldn’t surface in my quiet time. And, Satan would periodically attack me about it. I gave up. I don’t care enough about work to continue praying, etc. I don’t have faith. Blah. Blah. Blah. HOWEVER, God continues to remind me that as I sit before Him, HE will guide my time with Him and my prayer by the Holy Spirit as I surrender to HIm. I pray that His Spirit will control my mind.

    Here is what is amazing. I stopped praying for those things daily at some point in October. If they surfaced during my QT then I lifted them up, but it wasn’t a daily thing. Within the last 48 hours, the Spirit has heightened an awareness of ‘work’. The list has resurfaced. The list is still in effect. And, there was a brief moment where I was feeling like a failure until God said…

    HECK NO. I released you from that so you could spend your energy elsewhere. I have been answering your prayer. I know the desires of your heart. You do not have to ask me over and over and over again in order for me to answer you. I will answer you in My time. I do expect you to believe and have faith when you ask me. But as You seek Me, I will continue to guide you.

    And, that was a huge relief for me. Freedom. Encouragement. Truth.

    What He allowed me to see is that as an answer to my prayer of PROTECTION, He has not allowed me to SEE certain things. And then just in the last 48 hours, He has shown me what I need to see in order to effectively lead and serve my boss. It’s as if the path has been so foggy that I cannot see the next step until the moment my foot hits the ground. And, He used this situation to encourage me in my prayer life. I will pray so fervently for someone because I feel compelled to. And then it’s like He releases me (and I say release for lack of a better term…it’s more like He allows me to forget). I think He does that to answer another prayer. Rid me of PRIDE. Crucify my flesh. And, if I am praying fervently for someone and then in the process I see Him answer it…I will believe the lie that it was ME and that I had something to do with so and so’s blank. Ugly! Thankfully, as He continues to grow and MATURE me, it is about His FAITHFULNESS and SOVEREIGNTY and those things bring me to tears. (I still pray DAILY against pride and still confess it daily!)

    My life changed radically when I read something in a book. I don’t remember the book or what it really even said. But, it was something along the lines of: if I prayed something (of the heart), every day for six months…that the author would pay a sum or $ or something if God didn’t answer. I didn’t care about the challenge, but I loved the idea. And I prayed 4 things every day. (I think this was the list. Not that it really matters, but my first two journals were stolen so I couldn’t look it up. Again, I can smile about my journals being stolen trusting in His sovereignty. It is in my best interest that I don’t have them now. I trust Him in that. I really do.)
    1. That He would refine me and prune me.
    2. Restore me to the person He created me to be and no matter how difficult the process to prepare me for the road ahead.
    3. Bring me to a place of complete surrender and ruthless trust.
    4. That He would make my face RADIANT in a way that could only be defined by Him.

    That list was ALL the Holy Spirit because I didn’t (and still probably don’t) know what half those words even meant. But, let me just tell you…BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU ASK FOR! 🙂 And that ‘6 month challenge’ was the beginning of what I called my “sabbatical” which meant my relationship with Him became my number one priority. It began a time of RADICAL TRANSFORMATION AND HEALING. It was just me and God. It was hard, but He is so very tender and so gentle. When He was pruning away my ugliness, He did it with such care. It was so much better to sit before Him and allow Him to do it than by my previous methods of trial and error. I didn’t spend my time praying for things. I prayed for Him to change me. To rid me of me and to make me more like Him. And as He continues to refine, prune, purify me from all unrighteousness, and sanctify me with His Truth, I pray that He will let me live each day out of the heart He gave me. I lived so long out of my woundedness and brokenness.

    Writing things out gave me the gift of faith. When I first started journaling (I carry my journal everywhere with me. I am 29 and still carry around a bookbag. :))…I would find myself WHIPPING my journal out of my bag after something happened thinking…”wait a minute, did I pray that this morning??? And how did I know to pray it???” I am so forgetful. And, it is a beautiful thing to see prayer guided by the Holy Spirit. I will ofTen look back and wonder who the heck had a hold of my pen. It certainly wasn’t ME!

    One last thing…I had this song called: Teach Me How to Pray by Shirley Ceasar (I am a bit of an old soul) and I would belt that song over and over. I would ask Him to teach me how to pray. And, over the last 18 months that list of 4 things has turned into A RELATIONSHIP with the Lord. He does speak. The more I sat with Him…the more I could discern His voice. I was like, “pray continuously….YEAH RIGHT.’ And, now it is a reality. It is constant dialogue in my head. Precious.

    He is CREATIVE and made us each differently. Because of my personality my relationship with Him looks one way and yours will look another. Seek Him and allow Him to bless you with the most amazing relationship you will ever have. He will lead you down some crazy paths. The journey seems daunting at times, but cling to His promises as He leads you along the narrow path. His love never fails. I can’t wait to go HOME!)

    • 140.1

      Wow!You never posted before and boy did you make up for it!!!! For someone who apparently never had anything to say before, you’ve got a lot to say! I love people like that. And then there are people like me who never know when to keep their mouths shut! 🙂

  41. 141
    Emilee C. says:

    Hey ya’ll! Although my prayer life has changed and it has changed so much in my life… One thing in particular stands out. I have read through
    some of the latest comments and I really want to try some of the “tips”, but mine is very “easy” and it sounds simple, but not many people are blessed with the experience… Especially at my age of 12. The Lord is the man that is always with you… You may know about Him, but get to know Him. Become best friends with Him like you may have been at first in your walk. When you tell the Lord about the simplest thoughts that are heavy on your heart (although He already knows.) you gain more of an experience with Him in the big “stuff”. Believe that He is listening. Tell Him how that guy made you feel. Tell Him you had a bad day. Tell Him you are lonely; He is there. Tell Him what you miss. Tell Him why this day was so good. Delight yourself in Him and He will give you the desires of your heart. Laugh with Him. Cry with Him. And– sing to Him as He sings over you. {A book that really enhanced my prayer life is Heaven Is For Real.}

  42. 142
    Carmen says:

    Thank you so much, Beth, for sharing how you approach the Lord in prayer. It was so inspiring and helpful. I took notes to share with my daughter and granddaughters. Thank you for your servants heart and your willingness to share that which the Lord lays on your heart.

  43. 143
    Carol Hulin says:

    I’ve hesitated to write anything because everyone seems to have some sort of working prayer life, while mine is not. I’ve tried the journal thing but that got legalistic. Getting up early doesn’t work for me, as I work the evening and night shifts.
    I just know that when Beth was praying for us to have a passion and desire for prayer, I prayed too….
    Thank you Beth for helping me grapple with my prayer life…

    • 143.1

      I hear ya girl. I sometimes worry about getting to legalistic with my prayer journal and have seen myself just doing general prayers a lot, but sometimes it’s just enough to spur on some real thought and I end up totally pouring my heart out to Him. I just need the act of writing to get me going, but sometimes it gets to just be a habit and nothing more, but like I said, when I do that I just keep doing it and ask Him to open up my heart cause I get closed off a lot and He often does. Unfortunately, I have a hard time finding the off-switch and sometimes end up oversharing in all my other areas of life throughout the day. I also just chat with Him while doing laundry and stuff. Do to depression and PTSD (not a label just an explanation that most understand) I can’t work outside the home. I have 3 kids who are in school all day and so I’m alone a lot, which makes it easier since I also have ADD. Yes, I’m a mess, but God loves using messes, if you hadn’t noticed this yet, so I’m counting on Him to do something great in my life!

  44. 144
    amy says:

    I heard this idea recently on one of the Radio Programs I listen to and love it. When you/your family is out to eat, before you pray for your meal, tell your Server, “We’re about to pray. Is there anything we can pray for you about?” Now, I haven’t actually tried this yet so I can’t speak from experience about what different reactions have come, etc. BUT, my husband and I have both agreed to start doing this this year, starting with the next time we’re out to eat. What a great example for our kids (though they’re at the age where it might be a little “embarassing” to them–even better! ha!) but also a great way to connect with the community and share our faith in Jesus. And, since we never really know what’s going on in people’s lives, who knows where God might lead this open-door opportunity?

  45. 145
    Lisa says:

    I live in Turkey, and for some reason the government has blocked the site the live feed was on. If I can figure out the “VPN” I hope I can join you next time. I LOVE this idea, and I look forward to watching the recorded session. I’m sure my 15-year old son can figure out the VPN in a flash! Grace and peace to all of you!

  46. 146
    Desiree says:

    This has been an “answer to prayer”! I have struggled with consistancy in formal, structured prayer for a long time. I have used the excuse that “praying throughout the day” was sufficient but for me, I know it is not. It reminds me of times when my pastor husband and I are so busy that we have little face to face time with one another and we depend on texting or quick calls to keep up with each other. We all know that won’t make a marriage stronger. The same is true with prayer. I must spend “face to face” time with the Lord, prioritizing Him and recognizing the unfruitful activities that take up my time. I am speaking from a convicted heart (yes, prayerlessness is sin) and am so thankful for the Lord’s faithfulness to meet me where I’m at with grace-filled direction. After listening to the live stream and reading through the comments, I am sensing a plan that will work for me including the specific examples you showed us, Beth. I love notebooks and things, so I did purchase a composition book today 🙂 and will create the grid as I go so I can make adjustments if I need to. Thank you, Beth, for being so genuine and transparent. We are starting the James study next week! I can’t wait to experience what God has in store. Suggestion for a future topic is bible study aid/tools/methods. I know your bible studies we have done are sprinkled with these but like prayer, a step by step teaching and comments would be so helpful. Thank you for and your team for all you do!

  47. 147

    I was able to get onto the live stream yesterday, and yesterday Morning God Called me to Prayer,I do drive a school bus I have a husband who is disabled and a son who recently reevaluated at school they are saying his has ashbergers. that is no excuse for me to not to pray however my formal prayer time has been little to none these days, just because of me.I do go through out the day and talk to God, Ido pray and read my bible before my route begins and sneak in a few lines if I have some free time inbetween.
    I get overwelmed with what I have to do I just want to do what I want to do, and now being reminded that God will let me fall into sin for that I need to get back to focusing myself on Christ.
    I have recently started a Devotional, and gave my 8 year old a Devotional, we were reading together,and need to begin again.
    But Beth I love the things you said and what a Mighty God we serve,to have the convictions and then some solutions show up through you and your tweets I follow. God’s timing is perfect.

  48. 148
    Susan says:

    I think when it comes to prayer or the topic of prayer I have always been discouraged. Not necessarily because I don’t want to talk to God, but for much of my Christian life, whenever the topic has come up, people have said things like ‘Well, my husband gets up to go to work at 6am, so if I really loved Jesus then I’d get up before then’ – and they did.

    This has not encouraged me to want to get up to pray, but left me puzzled at how early is early enough, if you get up at 5am, well does it show you love Jesus EVEN more if you get up at 4.30…and if you get up at 4.30am…is that early enough. This sort of thinking has charachterised the sort of thinking I’ve been surrounded by regarding prayer, and if not that – heaps of guilt have either been put on me (or I’ve accepted the whisperings of the enemy) by believing I must be a lousy Christian and God is disapointed in me because I either don’t get up early to pray, don’t spend a long amount of time in prayer etc. like someone else does. As if there were a ‘magic formula’ to follow and if you were one of the ‘good’ Christians, well then, you would do it that way.

    All that to say, I have been greatly discouraged when this topic comes up (I’ve been saved 20 years this May and can think of only one other time that I have not been discouraged by someones ideas on prayer).

    However, watching the video yesterday was refreshing, because although getting up early, praying and reading first thing was mentioned in detail – I was so grateful that it was not to be taken as a “I do this – and you ought to as well” message. That the thrust was “This is what works for me and I love it – find what works for you” – no guilt, no legalism, no condemnation. Thank you.

    Uncoincidently the past month has had me yearning to get alone and be with God, perhaps because of the busy time that Christmas is – but even before then I can feel my heart tugging and my desire to be just with Him – obviously He is with me all the time, but so are my children (I homeschool 4 and am expecting another blessing in June). Much like I feel when I need a ‘date’ time with my husband, just to re-aquaint myself with him and enjoy his company – even though we are with each other evey evening. Being alone together with Him, undistracted is what I feel I need.

    So, it made me smile when the husband/wife relationship was mentioned (have you been reading my mind, Beth!).

    Needless to say, getting alone with God has been hard for me (I natter throughout the day to Him) but too much bad experience with other people and ‘their’ way of doing things being pushed on me hasn’t helped, as well as homeschooling 4 children – i’t not an easy thing to get away, and now being 5 months pregnant – it doesn’t seem the best time to start getting up super early to pray – but I didn’t get the vibe that that in itself was the aim of the topic. But, it confirmed to me that this longing in my heart is normal and whether it’s first thing in the morning or 3pm – time with God, just me and Him is good and right and is not just something you do to ‘tick’ the good Christian box (which is how it has been portrayed for much of Christian walk).

    Another ‘nudge’ from God via Beth, was when it was mentioned about praying for people in general – again the past couple of months I’ve noticed that the circle of people/needs I’ve been praying for has got less and less, until I really am only praying about my children and my husband. That has bothered me and niggled me for quite a while, because on one hand I don’t want to just rattle off a bunch of names and needs in parrot fashion, and yet at the same time I know there are needs and I care about them.

    So, I really liked the idea of categorising things in a notebook – I don’t keep a notebook or a prayer journal, but I think the idea may be very helpful so that I wont be so inward looking.

    Overall, knowing what my thoughts have been of late regarding the inwardness of my prayers, the tugging of my heart to be alone with God etc.., watching this has been confirmation to me and a gentle reminder from God that we’ve still not got together as it were.

    I’m not sure if I’ll ever get in the habit of daily setting aside a time – I am so tired – but my heart wants to – needs to. Thank you for this blog and the time and effort taken to arrange the video and encourage us all to turn to Jesus.

    One thing I was not sure about in the video (and perhaps I misunderstood?) was regarding confession and afterwards receiving cleansing and then also receiving His forgiveness. This confused me quite a bit, because wasn’t the purpose of the cross to cleanse and forgive all sins.

    I’m confused, because if I take it the way it was said (this is where chatting over a cup of tea instead of just hearing a few sentences would be helpful!!!) it makes me think that if I don’t confess a sin, that it means I’ve not been forgiven and have not been cleansed, because I haven’t confessed. Perhaps I’m not hearing what was said correctly? I don’t want to go off topic – although it is related.

    Thank you again,

    • 148.1
      Susan says:

      oh, dear that is too long – sorry.

    • 148.2

      Oh, sweetie. No, you don’t need to get legalistic about it. I used to worry about not confessing sins right away, about not realizing I sinned quickly enough or whatever, and then someone reminded me that when we accepted Jesus as our Savior, He forgave our sins, past, PRESENT, and FUTURE. Once and for all!I’m going to try and find more scriptures for you on this subject, but for now I recommend reading Hebrews 9. And, sweet thing, He IS faithful. He will not fail to let you know if there is a sin you need to confess and come to Him for cleansing over it. He’s not going to deny you anything over a sin He never brought to your attention. Please, please, please know that if you are in Christ you ARE His child, cleansed and forgiven!

      And if you want someone to pray for other than just you, and your family. You can pray for me. My husband and I are looking into getting me into therapy to finally deal with depression and PTSD. I will most likely be seeing a Psychiatrist, although, he is not a Christian. It would be good to get my meds regulated by someone who knows what’s really going on in my heart though, but there are concerns with that, so just pray that we would have wisdom and that I will feel absolutely comfortable pouring my heart out to whoever it is, because that’s always been a problem for me.

      • Susan says:

        Thank you, Shellie. That’s what I was thinking, if I have been cleansed (past tense) I don’t need to ‘ask’ for it again to receive it, but praise and thank Him instead!

        I’ll certainly be praying for you and your husband. 🙂


  49. 149
    Rachel says:

    I was so inspired by the livestream yesterday that I promptly went online and ordered a new journal to record my prayers and a weekly calendar to keep my thoughts in order. I am a more eloquent writer than speaker, so often fumble through nightly prayers with my children. Early in the morning or during my through-the-day prayers I can’t always remember for what I am praying. That is the cost of an over-worked brain, I suppose. I used to keep a 3×5 card with my list of those for whom I wanted to pray, but didn’t always know where it was. Thank you so much, Beth, for the ideas and inspiration. Can’t wait to see you again in Kansas City later this year!

  50. 150
    Sister Lynn says:

    My dear Siestas!!

    You are such an inspiration to me! You would think as a nun living in a convent – prayer effortless. And in one sense you are right – i have plenty of time carved out of my schedule solely for prayer. However, using these times fully, praying without distractions, and making the most of my focused time with God… not so easy. I love all the different tips (alarms, SOAP, etc) for making our times of prayer more plentiful, more intentional, and more focused.

    Blessings to you all!! with love, S. Lynn

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