Do you feel ashamed of yourself for neglecting to pray? Is it boring?
Do you go weeks at a time without picking your bible up?
You’re not the only one. I would go for months at a time because prayer seemed more like being back in school. I hated school.
I couldn’t connect with the teachers because of my learning style. Prayer was the same way.
Once I discovered conversational prayer I never turned back. Back then I couldn’t put into words the process but today it seems so clear.
Today you can begin a two-way conversation that you only dreamed about. As you experience communion with your heavenly Father it’s like a feast for your soul.
4 Aspects or ways that help your conversational prayer be more life-giving:
- Discerning and
I covered focusing and listening in my previous post. Now I’ll cover the discerning and responding aspects of conversational prayer.
Good relationships don’t just fall into place overnight, do they? Conversational prayer is the same way.
3. Discerning is the Third Aspect of Conversational Prayer
Discerning the content. But what do I mean by content? What kind of content are you to discern?
- Content about what you do not know about your own heart (compassionately confronted).
- Content about important things you thought you knew (fresh new insight). Often comes by asking new questions.
- Content that reminds you of things you’ve forgotten (John 14:26).
- Content filled with healing words for your soul.
- Content filled with His heart for you, how much He loves you.
How Do I Know It’s God
- God’s thoughts are different and better. Life-giving words feed your soul.
- God’s thoughts bring peace, love, awe, and seeing with better clarity.
- God’s confrontations are gentle and caring.
Harsh condemnation and judgment come from our own upbringing or from the accuser.
Checking with your friends or church family (providing that it’s healthy) confirmation is helpful. Remain teachable because we never outgrow listening prayer.
We all learn from experience. As you become more familiar with the Father’s heart through your own experience revealed in Scripture you will grow in your discernment.
4. Responding is the Fourth Aspect of Conversational Prayer
Why do you need to respond actively? Where do you need to focus your attention?
How do I make this “stick”? Questions like these help you to respond to God better.
Since you are engaging God directly, ask him,
God, what do you want me to take away from our time together?
How can I apply this?
What do I want to come back to again?
Conversational prayer is interactive. It’s not you doing all the talking but a heart to heart
conversation with the lover of your soul.
- Quieting and spending time together
- Enjoying the moment
- Praying with thanksgiving / praise / intercession (praying for others) / repenting / renouncing.
- Acting by contacting or connecting with others
- Acting by serving or giving as led by the Holy Spirit
- Acting by memorizing a verse or verses of Scripture
- Acting by posting a note to keep the thought or thoughts visible
- Acting by sharing with others
Long-term conversational prayer deepens your relationship with God. Listening prayer helps you get to know His character and how He loves and cares for you.
God’s mentoring brings growth, healing, and victory. Communion with God is a feast for your soul.
Lucy says, “conversational prayer has been transformational in my life. The four aspects of conversational prayer broken down beautifully.
These four parts of conversational prayer prepares one for the transformational journey of having a relationship, a conversational relationship with God. Conversational prayer is so practical and so profound.
I love how maturity is addressed as this does not often come up in other types of prayer. And I have grown so much by the help of others where they are strong in my weak areas modeling for me so that I can become strong too.
Okay, lets put into practice everything you’ve learned so far.
Conversational Prayer Practice – adapted from Renovation of the Heart in Daily Practice.
In this exercise below, you will Reflect on a snapshot of life
Start by choosing an image from the Psalms below that best describes your soul and what it’s crying out for. If you can’t decide, choose the one your best friend or spouse would choose for you.
A panting deer who has been running in search of water for a long time (Psalm 42:1).
A small creature crouching in the protective shadow of a huge creature (God’s wings)(Psalm 57:1).
A weary desert traveler (Psalm 63:1).
An ailing patient who stretches out his hands for help yet refuses to be comforted when comfort is offered (Psalm 77:2).
Someone who has narrowly escaped death (Psalm 116:8).
A tired mountain climber who has found a solid foothold (Psalm 94:18-19).
A gourmet dinner (Psalm 63:5) or (Isaiah 55:1-3).
Think carefully about why you chose the image you’ve chosen. What is the cry of your heart based on that image? What is needed to help your soul rest?
David points out,
“Engaging with God over life issues can be one of the most life-giving experiences we can have, as God shows us what we have missed and what we need in order to move on. But we need to stay teachable because these issues often have more than one layer to them.
For example, during one conversation I had with God about my self-hate, He gave me an insight that helped my self-image in some very important ways.
He revealed how many of the terrible things I believed about myself had more to do with the ways my family saw me during my early childhood than it had to do with who I really am in God’s eyes. It was a life-giving moment as if I had been given a cool drink of water in the desert.
When I sit down to spend time with God, sometimes I begin with a passage of Scripture, and other times I bring up whatever I am dealing with at the time.
Either way, God reveals His heart to me and helps me see things from His perspective. Most encounters with Him are like meeting with the Father I always wished I had – who always has time for me, always knows what I need and how I need to hear it so that I “get” it.”
Both seasoned believers, as well as new Christians, report that conservational prayer has been one of the most enriching experiences of their entire Christian journey.