Want to walk victoriously and see change in the life of yourself and those you pray for then start being sincere in your prayers. Not just the kind where you say "now I lay me down to sleep" or 'bless the little children in Africa' and 'take care of Grandma and Grandpa' but get real with the Lord and take time to pray. Sure there are times for what I call 'popcorn prayers' where you send a quick prayer to the Lord when it comes to mind but it is awesome to go to a quiet place and get on your knees if you can and cry out to God for all sorts of stuff.
There is something introduced through Moms in Touch called a DAWG day or 'day alone with God'. If you are able to schedule this it is a wonderful get away from distractions of your home and where your sole purpose is devoted to prayer and studying the Bible. When you pray, be authentic. Prayer is simply talking to God. So many have said to me in past, "will you pray for me as you seem to have a hotline to God." News flash. I am honored and humbled but I have no hotline more than the next person. Each of us is capable of praying. Matthew 6:7 says, "And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words." Just simply talk. That is all that is required. You do not need to say a bunch of 'thee's and thou's' either.
Be patient and allow God to work. And keep a clean heart. Psalm 66:18 says "If I had cherished iniquity in my heart, the Lord would not have listened." So you see you can not be harboring resentment and ill will in your heart and expect God to answer your prayers. Let's say you just get out of church and then about one half hour later you are gossiping about someone or talking about someone being an 'idiot'. Did you really learn the lesson of God's love or was your heart closed and you were just occupying a seat for church? It does no good to simply go into a church building if your heart is not changed when you depart. If you are around people like this in your life it somehow does no good to point it out but the Holy Spirit has to convict them of their wrong attitude. Ask God to help you keep a watch over your lips and allow the conviction of wrong to come from the Lord not you.
If you say 'Lord I love you' and then claim to not like someone or do not choose to forgive anyone then I doubt your prayers will get very far. 1 John 4:20 tells us "If anyone says, "I love God," yet hates his brother, he is a liar. For anyone who does not love his brother, whom he has seen, cannot love God, whom he has not seen." John 13:35 says"By this they will know you are my disciples if you have love one for another." How many people are out there in churches today who will walk out and be no different? You have to desire to be more like Jesus and not just be a Sunday Christian. Sunday is important but you have to live out what you learned all week.
Have you called anyone an ugly name? Do you find it hard to love some people? Do you resent anyone? Is there bitterness in your heart toward a friend or co worker? Do you find it hard to forgive an offense? All these things are blocking the answers to prayer in your life because they do not please God. Ask God to help you love the unlovable. He can do it. Say "Lord I want to love people like you love them. Help me to do this."
Philippians 4:6 says "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God." God wants to hear from you. You should pray and never lose heart. (See Luke 18:1).Finally Colossians 4:2 says "Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving." Always have a thankful heart for what the Lord has done in your life. "Never stop praying." (1 Thessalonians 5:17).
Be a part of the 'US Prayer Force' and cry out to God for your family, your country, and anything that crosses your mind. Big fancy words are not necessary. God just wants you to come to him and humble yourselves and pray.
PRAYER: Thank you father for the privilege of coming to you in prayer. What a tremendous gift to talk to you each day. I thank you for hearing my prayer and answering according to your will. Cleanse any area in my life that does not please you and help me be convicted of when I do something that displeases you so my prayers are not hindered. In Jesus Name. Amen.