If you are like me then sometimes your prayers can feel very mechanical and rote. Whenever I become apathetic in my prayer life, all of my prayers end up sounding the same. They are also usually rushed, lacking an earnestness and fervor that only comes from actively pursuing intimacy with God. Occasionally, I try to change things up a bit in order to break these cycles. Here are three things I do regularly when I feel like I am in a prayer rut.
1. I change my prayer posture.
This may sound somewhat silly, but it has truly helped me at times. Whenever I am feeling lazy in prayer I notice that much of my praying is done slouched over in a chair. Sometimes I simply need to move to my knees or stand up with arms spread wide in order to be refreshed in my prayer life. On many occasions, changing the position of my body has helped me to better “position” my prayers towards God and His will. We should always make sure our hearts are bowed low when we pray. If changing your posture of prayer will help you to bow your heart to God even lower, change it! If you are in public, don’t worry about looking foolish or what people might say. Do whatever you must in order to get right with God.
2. I thank God for the things I overlook.
We all have things we thank God for on a regular basis—our friends, our family, our health, our blessings, etc. When is the last time you thanked Him for the way the light shines through the window on a sunny day? Or for the peaceful sound of a midnight rainstorm? Have you every stopped to thank Him for the color green? The smell of fresh baked cookies? The laughter of your children?
How long has it been since you thanked God for saving you?
There are so many things we have to be thankful for. Understanding this will help us to get out of those prayer ruts. We know that every good gift comes from the Father. It should be our desire to thank Him for them all. It doesn’t matter how small or “insignificant” the thing might seem. God is worthy of the praise for it!
3. I turn to the Psalms.
What a treasure the Psalms are in the life of the Christian. Whenever I am struggling in my prayer life, I can always turn to the Psalms and be refreshed. The Psalms teach us how to pray with the knowledge of God’s character and attributes. They show us what it looks like to put God first when we pray. They also show us what is acceptable and not acceptable to pray for. We are all prone to pray selfishly for things, behaving as if God is our personal genie instead of Our Creator and Master. Praying through the Psalms will help any Christian to get his prayer life back in order.
I pray that your prayer life would deepen and grow as a result of implementing these three things. I know how difficult it can be to get out of a rut, but let me reassure you that it’s not impossible. If there is anything that you would add please leave it in the comments. It may be a blessing to someone else who comes along to read this post.
Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. Romans 12:12