Prayer For Focus And Strength
50 Powerful Prayer for Strength
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We know we still have so many things to do.We have dreams that should come to pass, goals to be achieved, desires to be granted, lives to impact, work to do, money to make and many other things we use our precious time for.And, oh! We can’t afford to be weak!We can’t afford to break down!
We mustn’t lose strength!
Often times than not, prayers perform a lot of wonders than we think they do.
Your words of prayers, today, can go a long way in giving strength to that special someone you believe shouldn’t get weak. As you offer prayers for them in your heart, letting them know you remember them in your prayers by sending a powerful prayer text is so sweet.
I trust you to make a beautiful choice from the list of messages we’ve prepared for you.
Please, do share with others.
Religious Prayer for Strength
1. I pray that the Lord grant you strength in all of your ways. May you not fall by the way. You will continually move from strength to strength. And may you always be happy. In Jesus name.
2. Make you always wake up strengthened for each day. Weariness is not your portion, in the name of Jesus. You will never be tired, even after all you want has been achieved, in Jesus name.
3. Your strength will never fail you. You will always remain strong to forge through each day. The joy of the Lord in your life will be your strength, always, in Jesus mighty name.4. It’s a new day. The mercies of the Lord are new every day. And today, His mercy will speak for you and grant you strength to go through today and days to come, in the name of Jesus.
5. Those who wait upon the Lord will have their strength renewed. And because you trust the Lord, you will get new strength for each day. You will never fail, in the mighty name of Jesus.
6. Strength for each new day is what I pray for you. You will always have reasons to go through each day because of the strength the Lord will bestow on you. And may you never get weak. In Jesus name.
7. Some days can be so tough, one would want to give up. But I pray that the Lord grants you the fortitude to go through each day as it comes. You are strengthened, by the power of the name of Jesus.
8. May the good Lord in His infinite mercies, grant you the power to go through today and all the travails of life. May you never lose focus, in Jesus name.
9. Even when the times are harsh, you will have the power that will make you never throw in the towel. You will love to go through each day, knowing that you have divine backing. In the mighty name of Jesus Christ.
10. Truly, it isn’t easy to live in a world ours. It really takes divine strength to remain standing. I pray for you, dear, that you receive that strength. And that strength will help you never to give up on living, in the name of Jesus.
Awesome Prayers for Strength
11. Live through each day believing that God is the strength. And once you live with this belief, even tough days will seem fun for you. May the sufficient strength of God abound to you in the name of Jesus.
12. Once the heart is strengthened it will be easy to go through even tough days. And you know, dearest that God is the strength of our heart. So give him your heart for strength and I trust God that you’ll never be let down in Jesus name.
13. You will never be sick. You will never be weak. You will never fall. You will never be weary. In the powerful name of Jesus. You will always remain strong and your strength will never fail you. In Jesus name, I pray, Amen.14. I believe you trust in the Lord and you have your anxieties cast on Him. I pray that you will not have reasons to think that your prayers are not answered. He never fails and He won’t begin with you dear. He’s your strength. In Jesus name, we pray, Amen.
15. The Lord will hold you up in His arms and you can be assured that stumbling is not for you. And that strength to go through all sort of situations will constantly be yours. He will surely provide for you, strength and courage for each day, in Jesus name.
16. In the name of Jesus, the Lord will strongly uphold you with His strong arms lest you dash your foot against any stone. He shall preserve and grant you the ability to scale through tough circumstances, Amen.
17. Grace and strength for each passing day will be granted unto you. The devil has lost his hold on you, therefore you can’t stumble, in the precious name of Jesus, Amen.
18. Strength from above can go a long way in making a day fulfilled. I pray you receive this strength for this day and for days to come, in Jesus mighty name. You are strong, dear!
19. And the Lord will grant unto you, strength beyond your comprehension. Nations you know not will rise for your cause and you shall not be weak in Jesus name.
20. May you have the strength to resist the works of Satan, today and beyond. May you become the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus, in His mighty name we pray, Amen!
Biblical Prayer for Strength
21. May His strength never leave you and may you continue shining the light God has made you. May His face shine on you even as you go about your daily activities in Jesus name.
22. Today, May God strengthen you and may all things work in your favour. May you obtain favour, even before men and those you know not, in Jesus name, Amen!
23. There is no need to give in to negative thoughts, today as the Lord himself will dwell in your heart and thoughts and strengthen you beyond your thinking. You are blessed in Jesus mighty name, Amen!24. Daily, you will live life in its entirety. You will not just exist, but live, because as surely as the Lord lives, your strength will never fail you. In Jesus name, Amen! Go, and end it in thanksgiving.
25. Even at moments when you have a broken heart with a groaning spirit, trust in God. His Grace is sufficient and His strength never fails. And He’ll provide you with His strength from above in Jesus name.
26. Commit each day into the Lord’s hands and see how he’ll rise for your cause and strengthen you. This should be the order of your day. God first. And divine strength will be yours, in Jesus name.
27. The Lord knows you, even more than you know yourself and He, in fact, knows when you weak. And because He loves you, He’ll provide you with strength lest you fall, in Jesus name, Amen!
28. Christ died and rose again and so we have life and strength to go through even tough times. May you receive the manner of strength that will leave you dazed and wanting more in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen!
29. You only have to believe, and His divine strength is yours because He never fails and He’ll give to you according to your request. In the name of Jesus.
30. Our God never sleeps nor slumbers and He has His eyes on you. He’ll be your strength and your backbone and you shall not be weary in Jesus name.
Godly Prayer for Strength
31. He cares for the sparrow, so He’ll never leave those He has created in His own image in their down moments. He’ll definitely provide strength, and you shall give Him thanks, in Jesus name.
32. Don’t stop believing. Keep looking on to Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. He will surely provide for you, strength, even more than you deserve and you will have cause to eventually praise Him, in the name of Jesus.
33. Rather than worry, pray! Keep trusting Him because the strength of those who wait upon the Lord will be renewed and there’s nothing they won’t have the strength for. He’ll be your strength, in Jesus name.34. Don’t be afraid nor fearful. The Lord will definitely show up for you, even when you least expect. He’ll show that He’s your God, over and over. And strength will be yours, in Jesus mighty name. Amen!
35. All things will work for your good as long as you trust the Lord for strength and He’ll give it to you. He will give you strength whenever you need it, in Jesus name.
36. The Lord Almighty will provide for you, strength from above that defies man understanding. You will never have cause to be weak, now and ever. In the name of Jesus.
37. No matter what you are struggling with, the Lord will always show up for you, strong. You will always have reasons to rejoice and praise our Saviour. So shall it be. In Jesus name, we pray.
38. It doesn’t matter what you think is gonna overcome you because it won’t. The Lord is near and he wouldn’t test you more than you can withstand. You only have to trust God and He’ll provide you with strength beyond your understanding, in the name of Jesus.
39. He will always be with you, as your guide, guarding your footsteps and strengthening you, because He’s a mighty God. His strength, He’ll give to you, in Jesus name, Amen.
40. You shouldn’t be scared of breaking down because you can’t because your trust is in the all-powerful God and He never lets down. So I decree that you receive strength from the Lord, now. In the precious name of Jesus Christ, Amen!
Inspiring Prayer for Strength
41. A city on the hill that cannot be hidden, that’s what He calls you. A person of strength as long as you dwell in His secret place. I pray for divine strength in all your endeavours. By the power in the name of Jesus.
42. God’s plan for you will definitely manifest and I pray He grants you strength in fulfilling His plans and purpose for you. You will never fail Him, because He will be your strength, in the name of Jesus.
43. The uncreated creator will be your strength in all of your deeds. He will always be with you and you will know that He alone is God because His strength never fails. His strength will keep you up and standing, I pray in Jesus name.44. After it all ends, you will have reasons to praise God. This is because you will realize that Him alone stood up for you in all that you went through and that he was and still is your support and strength, in the name of Jesus we pray.
45. His strength doesn’t fail. His word doesn’t change. He won’t leave nor forsake you, especially at times when you need Him most because He’s faithful and true to His words. His strength will abide with you, in the name of Jesus.
46. He will show up as your strength, your ever-present help in times of trouble in the name of Jesus. His strength doesn’t fail and He’ll see you through all phases of your life, for we pray, in the name of Jesus.
47. There’s no one our God who doesn’t let His own fear and does not let harm come their way. Even when times get hard, He proves He’s God and their strength. I pray this God will show forth, and silence your enemies and give strength to you, in the name of Jesus.
48. Strength to go through it all will the Lord give to you, even more than you desire. And things will go well and smoothly for you, as the Lord God liveth, in Jesus name.
49. The good Lord will watch over you and keep you from harm’s way. He will give you strength to walk through dark valleys of life, and you will not fall by the roadside in Jesus name.
50. Surely as God lives, His eyes of protection will never leave you and you will not lose sight of Him. He will be your guide, strength and refuge in all situations and hard times in the name of Jesus, Amen!
- Written By Oluwashanu Mayowa.
Learning to Focus and Concentrate on your Daily Prayer A Complete 30-Day Workbook
The ability to focus attention with sufficient intensity to accomplish the goal five times a day is a skill that needs to be developed.
Those people who have learned how to concentrate and can apply their minds to a particular task whenever necessary appreciate this fact.
Unfortunately, it is more difficult to concentrate on the act of Prayer simply because it is a repetitious act of worship. As a result, the effort required to fulfill this task is greatly increased.
The 25 strategies for concentrating in Prayer discussed in the Prayer booklet can be further divided into three categories: those that have to be well analyzed and understood; those that have to be applied before the Prayer, and the remainder applied after you complete your Prayer.
This workbook includes a 30-day exercise to significantly increase your concentration in Prayer and solve the problem of distracting thoughts and sounds.
Category One: Knowledge And Awareness
1 Have I understood and convinced myself of Allah (SWT)’s presence?
2 Am I aware that I am standing in front of Allah (SWT)?
3 Do I understand what I recite?
4 Am I making the correct pronunciations in Arabic?
5 Am I aware and practicing the Rules for Reciting The Qur’an?
6 Have I understood the main reasons behind The Five Daily Prayer?
7 Do I have the motivation and energy to sustain my attention?
8 Am I confident enough that Allah (SWT) is with me and that He is assisting me in my Prayer?
9 Have I refrained myself from heedless conversations?
10 Do I remember death often?
11 Do I fast often enough to increase my mental clarity?
12 Have I convinced myself that each Prayer I recite maybe my last Prayer?
If you have answered YES to 6 of the 12 questions above, you may proceed with the workout. However, even one negative answer means that you have to go back and invest more time and reflection in that particular aspect. Otherwise, the workout will not be very effective.
Category Two: Setting The Scene Of Prayer
1 Am I satisfied with the environment, the surroundings?
2 Am I wearing pure, clean, preferably white clothes?
3 Am I clean, pure and scented?
4 Am I confident enough in alternating recitations?
5 Am I in a relaxed and alert state of mind?
6 Have I been moderate in my food intake?
7 Am I grief-stricken and submissive?
8 Have I satisfied my hunger and thirst, as well as other needs?
9 Have I separated myself from the disapproved world and all its attractions?
10 Am I confident enough in arresting distracting thoughts in Prayer?
11 Have I connected my Ablution to the recitation of Adhan?
12 Have I connected my recitation of Adhan and Iqamah to the Takbeer in Prayer?
If you have answered YES to 6 of the 12 questions above, you may proceed with the workout. However, even one negative answer means that you have to go back and invest more time and reflection in that particular aspect. Otherwise, the workout will not be very effective.
This exercise works effectively with FOUR units of Prayer, employed only once a day, AFTER evening (‘Isha) Prayer. Your intention for this four unit Prayer should be for any lapsed Prayer (Qadha).In this workout, you will employ a Trigger Mechanism and pay the Debts you are obligated to. There are TWO types of debts: one, which has to be paid during your Prayer and the other, after you complete your Prayer. You have to work and complete the whole program as laid out.
Using a personal Trigger Mechanism will provide you a signal to get ready for a moment of concentration, while you complete the obligatory task assigned to you. The detail of this workout is described below and has to be employed for a full 30 days, without a break. Answering a complete YES to 6 the 12 items (in both categories) is also a requirement for the 30 days.
Workout: 30 Days
Your first Trigger Mechanism is the Takbeer (Allahu Akbar) that you pronounce before you start your Prayer. This is the signal to your mind that you are now standing in front of your Lord, the Most Powerful in this Universe. You have to appreciate the fact that you are standing in front of Allah (SWT) and He is watching over you.
al-Sadiq (AS) is quoted to have said:
When you say, Allahu Akbar, slight whatever is there between the high (heaven) and the earth, regarding it below His Majesty, because if Allah (SWT) looked into the heart of the servant while telling the Takbir, and saw therein something contradicting his Takbir.
He would say, ‘O’ You Liar! Are you deceiving Me? By My Might and My Majesty, I will deprive you of (tasting) the sweetness of remembering Me, and I will exclude you from My proximity and from getting pleasure through your supplication’.
(Mustadarak al-Wasa’il, Chapter 2, Tradition 9)
You promise to recite 5 SUBHANALLAH each time you have a significant distraction and you entertain the distracting thought for a few seconds. This debt has to be repeated as many times you get distracted and whenever you can pay the debt. All debts are to be paid ONLY in the state of Ruku’ (bending) or Sajdah (prostration).
For example, while reciting Surah al-Hamd, you get significantly distracted twice, then on your next Ruku’, you will pay your debt of 10 SUBHANALLAH first and then continue with the recitation normally assigned for Ruku’. If the distracting thought happens to occur whilst in Tashahhud or Salaam, then you will pay your debt as soon as you complete your Prayer.
The above debt and SUBHANALLAH forms part of your prayer and you should have that intention before and during your practice prayer. The debt should be paid ONLY in the state of bending (Ruku’) or prostration (Sajdah), the additions will otherwise make you Prayer NULL and VOID, even though your practice Prayer is lapsed and not a compulsory Prayer.
In any case, you have 4 Ruku’ (bending) and 8 Sujood (prostration) in the four unit Prayer to pay the debts you owe. Do not concentrate on how many times you get significantly distracted as you will be aware of this fact when it happens, and you will pay your debt in your next Ruku’ or Sajdah.You will generalize this activity throughout your 4-unit Prayer. After you complete your act of worship, you will recall how many times you had to repeat the 5 SUBHANALLAH and how many debts you had to pay.
Now you promise to recite 5 ASTAGHFIRULLAHA RABBI WA ATUBU ILAYH for every debt.
If you had paid 10 debts during your Prayer that means you recite 50 ASTAGHFIRULLAHA RABBI WA ATUBU ILAYH as soon as you complete your Prayer.
You will now record in your chart the number of times you had to pay the debt during your Prayer, 5 or 10, may be 3.
This is the end of the WORKOUT.
The above exercise is ONLY a workout to increase your concentration and plays no role in your daily obligatory Prayer. Also, this workout is to be practiced passively during the Prayer and only active after your Prayer – meaning that if you concentrate too much on the debt, then you might distract yourself from the major objective.
Category Three: Self-Assessment
As soon as you complete your workout, the four units Prayer, you will rate the following in your personal chart – concentration, energy and motivation.
Concentration – your ability to focus and attend to Prayer.Energy – strength or vigor; interest to perform Prayer
Motivation – an intervening process or an internal state that impels or drives you to Prayer. An energizer of behavior.
10 Powerful Prayers For Strength
Prayer does not need to be a flowery speech; its how we talk to God. We pray when we want to communicate thanksgiving or a need to our Heavenly Father.
He is the source of our strength and every one of our prayers is heard by Him. He not only listens and answers our prayers; He also tells us how to pray. We see the model for prayer as given by Jesus in Matthew 6.
I list the model below amongst these ten powerful prayers for strength.
Jesus Taught Us How To Pray
Jesus Teaches Us to Pray; Physical and Spiritual Strength
Matthew 6:9-13 (KJV) After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever.
Jesus Acknowledges God’s Strength in Raising Lazarus
John 11:41-42 So they took away the stone. And Jesus lifted up his eyes and said, “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this on account of the people standing around, that they may believe that you sent me.”
Jesus Needed Strength; He Petitioned The Father
John 12:27-28 “Now is my soul troubled. And what shall I say? ‘Father, save me from this hour’? But for this purpose I have come to this hour. Father, glorify your name.” Then a voice came from heaven: “I have glorified it, and I will glorify it again.”
Jesus Prays For All Men; the Strength of Selfless Love
John 17 1When Jesus had spoken these words, he lifted up his eyes to heaven, and said, “Father, the hour has come; glorify your Son that the Son may glorify you, 2since you have given him authority over all flesh, to give eternal life to all whom you have given him.
3 And this is eternal life, that they know you the only true God, and Jesus Christ whom you have sent. 4I glorified you on earth, having accomplished the work that you gave me to do.
5And now, Father, glorify me in your own presence with the glory that I had with you before the world existed.
6 “I have manifested your name to the people whom you gave me the world. Yours they were, and you gave them to me, and they have kept your word. 7Now they know that everything that you have given me is from you.
8For I have given them the words that you gave me, and they have received them and have come to know in truth that I came from you; and they have believed that you sent me. 9I am praying for them. I am not praying for the world but for those whom you have given me, for they are yours.
10 All mine are yours, and yours are mine, and I am glorified in them. 11And I am no longer in the world, but they are in the world, and I am coming to you. Holy Father, keep them in your name, which you have given me, that they may be one, even as we are one.
12 While I was with them, I kept them in your name, which you have given me. I have guarded them, and not one of them has been lost except the son of destruction, that the Scripture might be fulfilled. 13But now I am coming to you, and these things I speak in the world, that they may have my joy fulfilled in themselves.
14 I have given them your word, and the world has hated them because they are not of the world, just as I am not of the world. 15I do not ask that you take them the world, but that you keep them from the evil one. 16 They are not of the world, just as I am not of the world.
17Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. 18 As you sent me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. 19And for their sake I consecrate myself, that they also may be sanctified in truth.
20“I do not ask for these only, but also for those who will believe in me through their word, 21 that they may all be one, just as you, Father, are in me, and I in you, that they also may be in us, so that the world may believe that you have sent me.
22 The glory that you have given me I have given to them, that they may be one even as we are one, 23 I in them and you in me, that they may become perfectly one, so that the world may know that you sent me and loved them even as you loved me.
24Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory that you have given me because you loved me before the foundation of the world. 25 O righteous Father, even though the world does not know you, I know you, and these know that you have sent me.
26 I made known to them your name, and I will continue to make it known, that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.”
Jabez Prayed for Strength in an Enlarged Land
I Chronicles 4:10 Jabez called upon the God of Israel, saying, “Oh that you would bless me and enlarge my border, and that your hand might be with me, and that you would keep me from harm so that it might not bring me pain!” And God granted what he asked.
Nehemiah’s Prayer; Strength For a Big Project
Nehemiah 1:5-11 …“O LORD God of heaven, the great and awesome God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, let your ear be attentive and your eyes open, to hear the prayer of your servant that I now pray before you day and night for the people of Israel your servants, confessing the sins of the people of Israel, which we have sinned against you. Even I and my father’s house have sinned. We have acted very corruptly against you and have not kept the commandments, the statutes, and the rules that you commanded your servant Moses. Remember the word that you commanded your servant Moses, saying, ‘If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the peoples, but if you return to me and keep my commandments and do them, though your outcasts are in the uttermost parts of heaven, from there I will gather them and bring them to the place that I have chosen, to make my name dwell there.’ They are your servants and your people, whom you have redeemed by your great power and by your strong hand. O Lord, let your ear be attentive to the prayer of your servant, and to the prayer of your servants who delight to fear your name, and give success to your servant today, and grant him mercy in the sight of this man.”
Jonah’s Prayer from the Belly of a Fish
Jonah 2:2-7 …“I called out to the LORD, my distress, and he answered me; the belly of Sheol I cried, and you heard my voice. For you cast me into the deep, into the heart of the seas, and the flood surrounded me; all your waves and your billows passed over me.
Then I said, ‘I am driven away from your sight; yet I shall again look upon your holy temple. ‘The waters closed in over me to take my life; the deep surrounded me; weeds were wrapped about my head at the roots of the mountains.
I went down to the land whose bars closed upon me forever; yet you brought up my life from the pit,O LORD my God. When my life was fainting away, I remembered the LORD, and my prayer came to you, into your holy temple. Those who pay regard to vain idols forsake their hope of steadfast love.
But I with the voice of thanksgiving will sacrifice to you; what I have vowed I will pay. Salvation belongs to the LORD!”
O Strength and Stay (John Bacchus Dykes; Ambrose of Milan)
O Strength and Stay upholding all creation,Who ever dost Thyself unmoved abide;Yet day by day the light in due gradation
From hour to hour through all its changes guide.
Grant to life’s day a calm unclouded ending,
An eve untouched by shadows of decay,
The brightness of a holy deathbed blending
With dawning glories of the eternal day.
Hear us, O Father, gracious and forgiving,
Through Jesus Christ Thy co-eternal Word,
Who, with the Holy Ghost, by all things living
Now and to endless ages art adored.
Lead Me (Sanctus Real)
I look around and see my wonderful lifeAlmost perfect from the outsideIn picture frames I see my beautiful wifeAlways smiling
But on the inside, I can hear her saying…
“Lead me with strong handsStand up when I can’tDon’t leave me hungry for loveChasing dreams, what about us?
Show me you’re willing to fightThat I’m still the love of your lifeI know we call this our homeBut I still feel alone”
I see their faces, look in their innocent eyesThey’re just children from the outsideI’m working hard, I tell myself they’ll be fineThey’re in independent
But on the inside, I can hear them saying…
So Father, give me the strengthTo be everything I’m called to beOh, Father, show me the wayTo lead themWon’t You lead me?
To lead them with strong handsTo stand up when they can’tDon’t want to leave them hungry for love,
Chasing things that I could give up
I’ll show them I’m willing to fight
And give them the best of my life
So we can call this our home
Lead me, ’cause I can’t do this alone
Father, lead me, ’cause I can’t do this alone
Our God is Greater (Chris Tomlin)
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7 Ways to Fight Distraction in Prayer
I’ve been trying to pray more this year. But prayer doesn’t always come easily to me. I often sit down to pray with the best of intentions only to suddenly catch myself, a few moments later, daydreaming about yesterday’s conversation, tomorrow’s meeting, or next week’s vacation.
Most of us will admit experiencing this, and the rest of us are liars!
Distraction can be a huge hindrance in our prayer life, but I’m also discovering it provides an opportunity for growth. Here are seven strategies for fighting and harnessing distraction to deepen and direct our prayers.
1. Pray with Scripture
I remember hearing somewhere that Scripture teaches us how to pray as a mother teaches a child how to talk.
God speaks to us through his Word, and then we speak back to him in response, much as a child listens to his parents and then responds.
As the father of soon-to-be-3-year-old who’s talking more and more, and saying some truly hilarious things, this is an illustration that resonates with me! And I find it true in my prayer life.The point of the metaphor is that just as none of us is born knowing how to talk, none of us knows how to pray on our own.
We learn how to pray, and more often by observation and imitation than by direct instruction.
As I look to Scripture to develop and mature my praying instincts, I find it not only informs the content of my requests but also helps cultivate the impulses and appetites undergirding them.
There are so many things in Scripture my flesh would never think to ask for. I usually don’t ask for boldness when I’m persecuted (Acts 4:29), or interpret my grief in light of God’s honor and redemptive plan (Neh.
1:5–11), or say things “teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom” (Ps. 90:12).
But again and again Scripture rebukes my shallow, self-oriented prayers and summons them upward into the larger context of God’s glory, the church, eternity, and the advance of the gospel.
Here are some biblical prayers that may be especially worth meditating on to focus our minds and hearts:
- Nehemiah 1:5–11: Nehemiah’s prayer when he hears Jerusalem’s walls are still in shambles.
- Daniel 9:1–19: Daniel’s prayer for God’s people during exile.
- 2 Chronicles 20:1–12: Jehoshaphat’s prayer for deliverance from attack.
- Ephesians 3:14–21: Paul’s prayer for spiritual strength to grasp Christ’s love.
- Matthew 6:9–13: The Lord’s Prayer (often a great one to start with).
2. Pray with a Pen
I find it helpful on occasion to write out a prayer. Written prayer shouldn’t replace vocal/mental prayer—but I find it works effectively as a supplement. When you’re writing there’s a kind of mental discipline and intentionality that’s often absent in vocal communication. It’s harder to get distracted, and it enables you to channel and structure your prayer a bit more.
An added benefit is being able to go back, even years later, to see how God has answered your prayers—or, more commonly in my experience, changed what you pray for.
3. Pray with Fasting
Prayer and fasting are healthy practices in themselves, but work especially well together. An empty stomach reminds us to pray, “Lord, fill my soul!” When we’re earnest in prayer, it helps us deal with the hunger pains.
One thing I must fast from is social media. Social media changes the way our brains function. It speeds up information flow, clutters our consciousness, and reduces our ability for things meditation, reflection, quiet. It’s not an easy transition from surfing and for hours to lingering before the Lord in prayer.
When Jesus prayed, for instance, he often went out to “a desolate place” (Mark 1:35). him, we need to cultivate the discipline of solitude, the discipline of stillness before God. We shouldn’t be surprised if we’re scattered and distracted in prayer if we’re scattered and distracted all the time.
4. Pray with People
Corporate prayer and private prayer fuel one another (kind of prayer and fasting). Corporate prayer is all the more powerful if we’ve already been praying on our own; and private prayer is instructed and encouraged by how we’ve seen God at work in the prayers of others.
Not only is it harder to get distracted when you’re not out there on your own, but Christ promises his provision (Matt. 18:19) and presence (Matt. 18:20) when “two or three” are gathered in his name.
5. Pray with Purpose
Distraction flourishes with the amorphous, the ambiguous, the underdefined. I find it helps me maintain focus if I structure my prayer time in specific ways.
For instance, I might structure a prayer around one particular aspect of God’s character. “Lord, today I have seen your faithfulness through. . . .
” Or I might focus on a particular area of need: “Father, lately my heart has been cold because. . . .”It’s hard to drift off when there’s a theme or some kind of orienting structure to the prayer.
Also, if you’re consistently getting distracted by the same things, you might consider praying about those very things, whatever they are, that are distracting you. Convert the distraction into an opportunity; leverage its grip on your mind and heart to intensify your prayers. “Lord, I am distracted today by ______. I give this to you. . . .”
6. Pray with Emotion
There’s a kind of unhealthy manipulation that can occur in trying—through an act of the will—to stir up emotions we think we should be feeling. It’s also unhealthy to let our emotions have untouched sovereignty over our will. There’s a way to actively engage our emotions (rather than passively experience them) that’s entirely appropriate, and can help us fight distractions.
David, for instance, will interrogate his emotions: “Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me?” (Ps. 42:5); he’ll call upon his emotions: “All that is within me, bless his holy name” (Ps. 103:1); and he’ll reason with his emotions: “The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?” (Ps. 27:1).
If there are particular emotions leading to distraction (boredom? anxiety? self-concern?), talk back at them, as David does. Engage them with the counter-emotions called for by truth.
7. Pray with the Gospel
Spurgeon once advised preachers, if they ever lose their place in their sermon or don’t know what to say next, to go straight to the gospel. That’s a good instinct, and I believe it can help us in our prayer life as well.
If all else fails, if distraction keeps seeping in, keep circling back to the gospel. I often find it helpful to pray with this kind of framework:
- Lord Jesus, this is where I would be without you: __________.
- Lord Jesus, this is where I am now with you in my life: __________.
- Lord Jesus, this is what you went through to do this: __________.
The gospel never runs gripping, awful, wondrous power. Jesus has rescued us from sin, death, and eternal ruin. He’s adopted us into his heavenly family, clothed us in his righteousness, and invited us to share in his glory.
And he’s done so at infinite cost—as the blood drained slowly from his veins, as he sunk down into death and defeat, as friends fled and enemies mocked, as the love between Father and Son was now, for the first time in eternity, ruptured.
It’s hard to daydream when our hearts and minds are focused on the great truths of hell, heaven, and Calvary. Make them the North Star of your prayer life, and it will help you fight distraction.