Started our new series on prayer this past Sunday. We are calling the series iPray as we look at different apps of prayer that we should download into our lives. During the series we are looking at models of these prayers in the book of Psalms. The first app we studies was praise, or adoring God for who he is, for his character and being. If you have not picked up or downloaded your prayer calendar and journal, be sure to do that today and start praying with us.
As we work through this series, one of the things we will do each week is to post a blog with some ideas for each area of prayer. These will be practical, life-application ideas you can try and use. Every person is different. So while the principle is vitally important (that we need to be deep in our prayers, and that each of these areas needs to be a part of our prayer life), the path to this will look different for every person. These blogs are merely ideas for integrating the principle, in this case the importance of praise into life.
But we also need your help. We want you to join the conversation. We want my blog to be the beginning of a discussion that grows and grows. We want you to include ideas that you have used to integrate these areas of prayer in your life over the next five weeks. Hopefully after a few days we will have a long list of amazing ideas that will help everyone grow in their personal and corporate prayer life. So join in! Now to the first week – praise.
Ideas for praise in your prayer life
- Use the Psalms a lot. Pray them. Psalms is a book of prayers, songs, poems, and praises to be used in the worship of God’s people. They are dripping with praise. Literally, open the Psalms and recite the words as your personal prayer of worship and praise.
- Use music in your worship and praise – Several Psalms challenge us to use music, or as one says, “Sing to the Lord a new song (Psalm 96:1).” Download some music that fits your style, but has words that take you to a vertical conversation with God. If you don’t have music of this sort you might try some of the music listed below. Then use some of these songs in your private times of prayer. Let abandon flow (make sure you are in a place where no one is watching), sing with all your heart to God.
- Try reciting the ABC’s, but with each letter think of an attribute of God that leads us to praise and worship.
- Utilize postures of praise and worship that are part of the Biblical story. Here are a few: *Standing with hands raised (Psalm 28:2), lying prostate with face down on the floor (I Corinthians 14:24-25), dancing before the Lord (2 Samuel 6:14-15, Psalm 150:4), kneeling before God as King (Psalm 95:6), bowing (Psalm 5:7), clapping (Psalm 47:1).
- Program “praise breaks” during the day. Set an alarm on your phone or watch for one or more times during the day, and when the alarm goes off, stop for a moment to express your love for God and your joy in his being.
- Create a habit of starting and ending your day with praise – As you wake up, voice a prayer of praise and thanksgiving, and as you go to bed, praise him for another wonderful day in His presence.
- Start using the word “Hallelujah” a lot.
- Make your life a praise – learn the ways you best express your love for God and do it often. If you find great joy in serving, then serve. If you worship by being a contemplative and going deep in prayer, make it happen. If you are an intellectual who discovers praise while reading and contemplating deep truths, find time to do that.
OK, now its your turn. Add to the conversation and start using a few of these ideas in your life this week.