Prayer: Reigning in the Rabbit

When I pray out loud or in my head it takes a grand total of .02 seconds before I am off down a rabbit trail (often called the trail of Pinterest) looking up ideas such as how to keep ants out of my basement apartment.  Anyhow, at one time I prayed out of obligation all the while telling myself I was not cut out to be a prayer warrior.  Let me tell you outright that is a lie.  I believe every single person is a prayer warrior.  The issue is that we think prayer has to look a certain way.  When I started thinking outside the box, so to speak, my prayer life changed.  Today I am going to share 3 of my favorite strategies (remember what works for me may not work for you!)

Habit Prayers:  During college I was part of  a summer discipleship program that changed my life.  The program provided me with a job at a local hotel.  One of my goals for the summer was to pray consistently for my campus pastors and their family.  Knowing that I am easily distracted I made the decision to try praying for them every time I made the coffee for the breakfast bar.  It worked so well I began assigning people to each of my responsibilities.  The paint crew was prayed for as I cleaned the bathrooms.  The  two "Dairy Queens" were prayed for as I mopped the hallways.  Would you know that even now 5 years later the smell of coffee immediately reminds me to pray for that family? When I scrub a toilet the paint crew is prayed for and wet floors remind me to pray for the DQs.  It's not a habit anymore... it's a reflex.  The reason I think this strategy worked so well for me is that I used already established habits to create new habits.  So much easier than starting a new habit from scratch! Also, my brain is just naturally more focused when my body is busy!


Bookmarked Prayers: This is a new strategy I started about a month ago.  I noticed I had acquired a handful of prayer cards, but rarely prayed for the people.  I decided to start using the prayer cards as book marks.  Now every time I open up a book to read I take a minute to pray for that person or family. (Send me your prayer cards I have plenty of books!)

Written Prayers: Being prone to rabbit trails I noticed that writing helps me to organize my thoughts.  Now it helps me to focus my prayers as well!  I also love having the written record of the prayers.  Not only can I see how my prayers evolve I can also see more clearly how God responds.

These are just a few of my favorite strategies.  One day I will share a few more.  

For now I would love to know what's your favorite prayer strategy? Or is there a strategy you've thought of but never tried before?