The Practical Disciple |

Praying Scripture, Two Quick Prayer Techniques

Praying scripture can be a fantastic way to enrich your prayers.  Specifically, following scripture can move you to pray about things you normally wouldn’t, thus broadening your prayer life.  Also, praying scripture can help you focus and pray for longer periods of time.

Two simple techniques for praying scripture are:  1) Using scripture as a topical guide and 2) Paraphrasing Psalms.  Here are some example…

1. Using Scripture as a Topical Guide

Recently, scripture guided my prayers as I was sewing baby quilts and praying over them for the next generation.  I sew for about 30  minutes which can be a super long time to focus on a single topic.  I was struggling to keep praying until the Sermon on the Mount came to mind.  Last year I had memorized the Sermon on the Mount during Lent

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How to Keep a Daily Prayer Time Even if You’re Crazy Busy


When you’re crazy busy how you spend your time should be about clearly knowing your highest priorities and placing those things first. Unfortunately, too often the squeaky wheel gets the grease or we follow the path of least resistance toward immediate gratification.

These human nature impulses don’t have to be the downfall of making prayer a priority. In fact, the key to keeping a daily prayer time in the midst of competing priorities is to full on exploit our human nature. Specifically, the key is to intentionally make prayer the squeaky wheel and make the path as clear and wide as possible to it.

So how do you make prayer the squeaky wheel?

Turn up the volume. Right now prayer must be

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Staying Focused in Prayer, Lessons from My Lenten Discipline

 

Do you struggle with staying focused while you pray? You aren’t alone. In fact, this is the number one prayer problem people share with me. This shouldn’t surprise us in a culture that constantly interrupts us by texts, notifications, commercials every seven minutes on television and a host of other distractions. It’s a wonder anyone can focus.
 
Good news -You don’t have to be a victim to your wandering thoughts. With a few simple strategies even the most ADD person can reign their thoughts in and spend quality time with God in prayer. I was reminded of this simple fact recently when focus became a HUGE problem for me over the past four weeks. Here’s what happened and how I fixed

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The SOAP Bible Journaling Method

SOAP Bible Journaling Method
I am a big fan of using a structure for your devotional time. Following a structure inherently helps you overcome common problems people have keeping a consistent devotional time. I recently encountered a bible journaling model known as the SOAP method. This easy approach is very similar to the daily practice I followed in college. I just lacked the acronym. Before I break down the SOAP method, I want to interject a word about the benefits of adopting a structure for your bible reading time.
 

BENEFITS OF FOLLOWING A METHOD

First, a method helps you focus. A method offers you a pattern to come back to when your

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The Prayer Work We Must Do To End Violence

The prayer work we must do to end violence

“I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone – for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.” —I Timothy 2:1-2

As Paul wrote to the young man Timothy a letter of encouragement, he knew the fears of being on a mission in a hostile culture. The prospect of persecution loomed large. The spiritual solution to this threat was first and foremost prayer. Specifically, Paul called upon Timothy to pray for “kings and all those in authority”. He emphasized the importance of this by

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How To Move Out Of Anxiety And Into God’s Peace

How to Move Out of Anxiety and Into God's Peace
 
Anxiety can paralyze you. How many nights have you spent lying awake stewing anxiously over a conflict? Have you ever had a sudden change of circumstance leave you bewildered and unable to move?
 
Paul’s letter to the Ephesians offers a simple three-fold pattern for how we can faithfully move out of our anxiety and into action. Doing so brings you to a place where you can experience both the peace of God and the God of peace.
 

1. Release anxiety by turning to God in prayer

Paul wrote,

‘Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with

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