Hi, my name is Jennifer Lee. I am a follower of Christ, worship leader, Sunday school teacher, Christian writer, and …
a woman with a scattered, muddled prayer life.
I do hereby confess this to you, just like I did on my Facebook page earlier this week.
It’s hard to read that itty-bitty print up there, so I’ll repost my confession right here :
“First, a confession. My prayer life has become disorganized and scattered. I used to keep a great prayer journal, but I am not keeping up with it at all. I have been looking for ways to stay more organized in my prayer life. … I am not trying to be legalistic here, but I need some sense of order to my scattered prayer life.”
Because, the truth is this. I often make prayer a last resort.
I promise to pray, but forget about my promises until I see you in Aisle Nine of the grocery store, or near the altar.
And sometimes, I get so caught up in my own agenda, I wait until my head hits the pillow for my “quiet time” with the Lord.
I’m not a complete prayer failure. I pray often throughout the day, while I’m driving or pulling weeds or washing dishes or sending a card to an ailing friend. If you and I are talking on the phone, and you need prayer, I stop right there and pray for you with the telephone cradled to my ear.
But my prayer life felt … lacking. Like I was missing out on something really holy because I was so disorganized.
I didn’t want to get legalistic and rote. But I knew this: I needed to reconnect with God in a more intentional, orderly way.
So, I asked friends.
And you helped.
You sent emails and Facebook messages. You responded in the comment box. You offered links and tips, and stopped at my front door to tell me what works for you.
You also let me know that I’m not alone. This is a common struggle, and even my own pastor — bless his heart — fessed up to having trouble.
I’ve adopted some of your ideas, and have incorporated some of my own. As promised, I put together a list of resources and ideas. And, friends, please share your ideas in the comment box so we can be mutually encouraged.
A PRAYER CHART
I have adopted a seven-day prayer chart, posted on the bulletin board in my office. Each day has an emphasis: Mission Monday for our friends around the world; Together Tuesday for our friends and community; Work Wednesday for our daily work; Thirsty Thursday for our spiritual growth; Family Friday for our immediate and extended family, and a Weekend of Wonder and Worship dedicated to praise and thanksgiving.
PRAYER. THERE’S AN APP FOR THAT!
One friend suggested this app for my iPhone, which I downloaded for $1.99. I was a bit skeptical at first, worried that it was just one more reason to hold that iPhone in my hand. But friends, this has been such a wonderful way to organize and schedule prayer requests. Super easy.
A PRAYER “PARTI”
Grab your feather boas and dancing shoes, then check out this post on Monica’s blog to find our more about a PARTI approach to prayer. (Wise words, from a woman who has inspired me for years.)
Lyla keeps index cards for prayer needs, but she also is learning that prayer is as much listening as talking — if not more. You’ll want to read this.
A VIRTUAL PRAYER TOOL
My friend, Karin, suggested a wonderful online prayer tool called Echo Prayer. With this tool, you can create prayer lists, then set times throughout the week for reminders via email.
I am so grateful for your help over on the Facebook page, and I look forward to your ideas here in the comment box.
And … I’m thankful for a God who loves me — scattered, disorganized, unfocused me. His amazing grace still amazes me.