18 And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. 19 Pray also for me, that whenever I speak, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel,
New International Version - UK
Prayer is how we stay close to God and hear what he wants in our lives and in the life of our churches.
The act of prayer transforms us and changes the world for good, so whether it is done corporately or privately, nothing is more important for the life of the church than for its members to go deeper into God in prayer.
Praying can happen in many different ways and there is always scope to learn something new. Even those closest to Jesus, his own disciples, asked him to teach them how to pray.
These links and ideas may help and inspire you to explore new ways of praying and experience within you and around you the transforming power of prayer in a different way. Much of it is taken from the 24-7 prayer website, (with permission), and which is well worth a browse.
Diocesan monthly Prayer Cycle
The Diocesan Prayer Cycle offers daily suggestions for people, projects and special days to remember in your prayers for each month.
Here are some ideas to help with private prayer, corporate prayer and to help others pray:-
Help me pray
- Try these books: Pete Greig’s How to pray - a simple guide for normal people, God on mute and How to hear God (coming in January 2022). Also, Brian Heasley’s book, Be Still - a simple guide to quiet times. There are hundreds of books on prayer! Find one that includes practical tips which you can experiment with.
- Try using apps, for example the ‘Lectio365’ app, which helps individuals to ‘pray the Bible every day’, the ‘Inner Room’ app, which is a ‘prayer room in your pocket’, the Church of England’s ‘Daily Prayer’ app, which is a complete series of morning, evening and night prayers. There are loads of prayer apps, and most of them are free - find one that works for you by trying a few.
- Search for prayer resources online, the Everyday Prayers offered on the national Church of England website are good. Simply entering search terms into Google such as ‘Creative prayer’, ‘How to pray’ or ‘How to listen to God’ should offer some helpful results.
- Get creative. Try prayer walking. Try setting an alarm on your phone and praying the Lord’s Prayer wherever you are when it goes off. Try going somewhere different to pray (Jesus used a garden and a mountainside). Try silent prayer. Try noisy prayer or singing. Try painting your prayers or writing poetry.
Help us pray
- Use short courses with your small group/friends, e.g. The Prayer Course, The Unanswered Prayer Course, The Be Still course.
- Try using apps, e.g. the ‘Lectio for Families’ app, which helps families to pray the Bible together every day
- Set up a prayer room – the 24-7 site shows you how.
- Search for prayer resources online. Thy Kingdom Come offers lots. There’s a whole section on prayer resources for families and young people.
- Get creative. Go prayer walking together. Use prayer activities and other creative methods in your church prayer meetings.
Help others pray
- Create spaces in your community for other people to try praying. Your churchyard, your church porch, or just a poster with a QR code on a noticeboard can get people curious.
- Set up a prayer space in school – see the Prayer Spaces in Schools website more on this.
- Set up a Hope Space – see how on the HOPE Together website.