“Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with an attitude of thanksgiving.” Colossians 4:2
I am glad that Paul admonished us to “keep alert” in prayer … because I need that admonition all too often. I get distracted. I get tired. I get bored.
I have found certain aides to keeping alert in prayer:
Writing my prayers out so that I am forced to focus on the words.
Using the Scriptures as an outline for my prayers so that I pray more comprehensively for a situation. For instance, I have used I Corinthians 13 while praying for a troubled marriage, praying through each aspect of love that is mentioned there.
Praying prayers written by other people, such as those found in the Anglican Book of Common Prayer.
Spending time in worship to focus on God and who he is, and letting the words of the songs become my prayer.
Scheduling time to pray when I am energized and at my best, rather than when I am tired.
What is your main barrier to effective prayer? Do you get distracted? Tired? Bored? Busy?
What has helped you in the past to keep alert in prayer?
What new steps could you take in the future?