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image of prayer

Ephesians 6:18 says, “Pray at all times in the Spirit with every prayer and request, and stay alert in this with all perseverance and intercession for all the saints.”

When I’ve read this verse in the past, I’ve assumed that the perseverance mentioned is referring to making intercession for the saints. What I’m realizing now, at least for me, is that perseverance is referring to staying alert during prayer.

I’ve always chased a few monkeys in prayer time, but lately it’s been ridiculous. I’m starting well, but then all of the sudden I’m thinking about writing, running, yesterday, tomorrow… you get the idea. I’ll startle back to the fact that I’m supposed to be in prayer and hunker down again only to realize a few minutes later my mind has headed in yet another direction.

As I began to think back to a time where I was more focused during prayer, I realized I needed to pray OUT LOUD. I guess I thought I was a “mature enough” Christian to be focused in silent praying, but I’m not.

I also realized that I need a list. I don’t mechanically go through my list every day, but if I’m struggling, it does help me to focus a little easier.

My list also helps me to remember to faithfully pray for family, church, and more. Otherwise, I can go several days without praying for things I truly meant to be in prayer about.

I heard John Ortberg say once that the monkeys that we often chase during prayer time can indicate what God wants us to pray for. I do stay aware of that and ask often whether that’s the case, but praying versus planning is totally different and I need some help praying. I seem to have the planning part down.

So, how am I choosing to stay alert during prayer?

I am definitely implementing praying out loud.

I’m sticking to a set time and I do have a list.

How are you choosing to stay alert in prayer?

If you have something that works for you, I would love to know. Sharing what works for each other is how we grow and I need some growth, people. Help a girl out. 😊

*image by cottonwood.org