Monday, November 3, 2014

Quieting Your Heart

Prayer Time Enhancers for Personal Worship
by Cheryl Barker
 
 
In the midst of busy and stressful days, do you find yourself having difficulty moving into an attitude of worship as you begin a time of prayer? Don’t despair or give up on the possibility of having worshipful, personal prayer times in your day to day life. Try some of the following prayer-time enhancers and see what works for you:
 
Find a place away from the distractions and pressures of the day—even if it’s just in the next room. “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” (Luke 5:16)
 
Music works wonders. It soothes the soul and helps refocus your thoughts. Sing a praise chorus or an all-time favorite hymn to the Lord or just listen to the music of a Christian recording artist. “How good it is to sing praises to our God, how pleasant and fitting to praise him!” (Psalm 147:1)
 
Light a candle and watch your stress levels melt away. Begin your prayers by just thanking God for the beauty of candlelight and for the calming effect it has on your spirit. “...he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul...” (Psalm 23:2-3)
 
Kneel before the Lord as you approach Him in prayer. Even if you can’t stay on your knees the entire time you pray, kneeling helps you bow your heart before God, too. “Come, let us bow down in worship, let us kneel before the Lord our Maker.” (Psalm 95:6)
 
Read a favorite psalm of praise, thanksgiving, or encouragement. Replace the worries of the day with the Word of God. “The law of the Lord is perfect, reviving the soul...” (Psalm 19:7)
 
Look outside or go outdoors if possible and find something in God’s creation that you enjoy and then praise Him for it. “When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place...O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!” (Psalm 8:3, 9)
 
Count your blessings and see how quickly a heart of gratitude crowds out the concerns of the day. This also reminds you to thank God for some things that you sometimes take for granted. “Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.” (Psalm 100:4)
 
Be quiet before God and meditate on who He is. “Be still, and know that I am God...” (Psalm 46:1)

Praying to our heavenly Father is a wonderful gift and privilege. Treat it like the treasure it is. Take time to lay aside the pressures of the day, quiet your heart, and enter into worship as you pray. Both you and God will be blessed by it.

*All scripture is taken from the NIV84.
 
*Flickr photo by Noukka Signe (https://www.flickr.com/photos/velvettears/ ), Creative Commons License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/ )
 
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Cheryl Barker is a writer whose work appears in magazines, compilation books, Blue Mountain Arts greeting cards, and other publications. She blogs regularly and is also working with her agent to find a publisher for her first book. Find her inspirational blog at cherylbarker.net and check out her blog designed especially for mothers of the bride at cherylbarker.net/mother-of-the-bride. Be sure to sign up for Life Notes, her free quarterly inspirational newsletter, when you visit her site. One lucky subscriber will win a $25 gift card to Barnes & Noble on Nov. 13!

4 comments:

  1. Rachel, thanks so much for hosting me on your blog today! I pray God will use this post to bless someone. Appreciate you, my friend!

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  2. Your welcome, Cheryl. I always receive a blessing from reading your posts and I hope my readers will too. :)

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  3. Thank you Cheryl for these wonderful inspirations. "Count your blessings" - I think this is a great tip to practice throughout a busy day. Even when it seems there is little time for prayer, just stopping to thank God and observe all the blessings surrounding us, brings us closer to God.

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    1. Mairead, thanks so much for coming by! I'm so glad you enjoyed the post. I agree -- our sentence prayers of praise and thanks do a wonderful job of keeping us connected to our heavenly Father. Thanks for sharing!

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