Simple Prayer Ideas
Weave prayer into your daily life with these six simple ideas:
1. Be God-Conscious
“God, I want to give you every minute of this year. I shall try to keep you in mind every moment of my waking hours.”
Learn to be constantly aware of God's presence - come up with ways to remind yourself to think about God every hour; then every half hour; then every 15 minutes - until you’re thinking of God unprompted.
Talk to Jesus throughout the day and look for His presence in ordinary events: is He trying to get your attention? What is He saying to you? God is everywhere in your everyday.
2. Be balanced
If you often find yourself praying about the same things, bring some variety and balance to your conversation with God by using the ACTS acronym:
A is for Adoration – spend time worshipping Jesus. Use your favourite music, a Psalm, write something, or choose a recent answer to prayer to inspire your praise.
C is for Confession – Ask the Holy Spirit to show you when you have sinned and fallen short of God’s love recently - you might want to use the words of a Psalm as your prayer. Say sorry for whatever comes to mind, and ask the Holy Spirit to help you change your future behaviour.
T is for Thanksgiving – think, speak or write a list of good things in your life today and thank God for each of them.
S is for supplication – supplication is an old fashioned word for asking. Ask God to intervene in each situation you face. There's no special language or strategy needed. Jesus encourages us to keep it simple.
3. Be silent
We live in a noisy world full of distractions. Whether you love or hate silence, there is an incredible peace and connection to God when we practise stillness:
“Step out of traffic, take a long loving look at me…”
Psalm 46:10 (MSG)
Try building times of silence and stillness into your day. Choose a time and place with few distractions. Turn off your phone, computer, music and any other sources of noise or connection. If you find silence hard, just try 3 minutes to begin with, and build from there.
If you find your head full of unwanted thoughts, give each one to God, and consciously keep focusing back on Him. Posture can help or hinder our focus - sit up and open your hands as a symbol of willingness to meet with God. Breathe deeply and slowly invite the Holy Spirit.
4. Be persistent
Jesus told a story of a woman so passionate about wanting justice she succeeded in getting her way simply by annoying the Judge who could solve her problem until He finally relented.
Our Father is a lot more willing to act than a reluctant Judge, but Jesus used this story to illustrate the importance of not giving up when prayers aren’t answered immediately.
It’s ok to ask, ask again, and keep asking God until we see a change.
Are there specific things you want to persist in asking for? Try these three ways to help you remember to pray and not give up:
Use your hands – choose five people or situations you want to pray for. Assign a finger or thumb to each, and spend five minutes a day praying for each one.
Use your mirror – is there something you look at several times a day like a mirror, window, computer screen or phone? Write a note and stick it where you’ll see it most as a reminder to pray
Use your clothes – do you have a favourite accessory or piece of clothing you wear often? Assign a prayer request to a specific item and every time you wear it, remember to pray for that specific request.
5. Be unpredictable
If you struggle to focus during times of prayer, try something more interactive: use dice and assign someone you want to pray for, or a way to interact with God (e.g. silence, thanking, singing, etc.) to each number. Roll the dice and spend a few minutes on the prayer assignment it gives you.
Alternatively take your prayers to the streets - go to a specific place in your area and pray over it. Or go on a prayer walk in your community with others. Find out more on our prayer walking pages.
6. Be kind
Random acts of kindness are an easy way of making prayer practical and positive. It can move our focus away from our needs, and onto the needs of others. Kind acts can be small or large; just be aware of the people and situations around you, and have fun thinking of ways to bless them.
Try the following:
Doing the washing up, and praying that your household have clean hands and a pure heart.
Treat someone to lunch, and pray that your love and attention reflects Jesus.
Send someone chocolates or flowers anonymously, and pray they can better understand how much God loves them.
Pay for the coffee of the person behind you in the queue, and bless them with joy.
Leave food next to a sleeping homeless person and pray that the Father would provide for their needs.
Help a person struggling with heavy bags, and pray that they know the light yoke of Jesus.
Also check out these resources:
The ‘Pray-as-you-go’ podcast: a daily audio podcast designed to help you pray in the midst of a busy day
The Moravian Daily Texts: first published in 1731 in Saxony, this little book grew out of a spiritual renewal of the Moravian Church in 1727.
Pray the daily office - use the Morning, Midday and Evening prayers of the Northumbria Community.