Editor’s Note: I don’t know about you, but I had trouble during the baby years staying focused in prayer. Especially if I was extra tired. If you have problems staying focused in prayer sometimes, read this thoughtful guest post by Andrew Fouché of the Olive Olive Tree Bible Study App, encouraging us to try praying…loudly. This post first appeared on the Olive Tree Bible App’s blog and was used with permission. Dana
I can’t help but wonder if I’ve allowed myself to be influenced by a culture that increasingly caters to a short attention span because recently, I’ve noticed that I’m easily distracted in my prayers. I always start out my prayer time with good intentions, but before I realize it, I’ve created a prayer sandwich with a distracted filling that looks something like this:
My unfocused prayer sessions were bugging me so much that I even brought it up to my wife as a prayer request one night.
As I was about to start my prayer time the next day, I tried something different. Instead of softly mumbling my prayers to God, I made them loud. Not only did I make them loud, I actually stirred myself up to speak them as if they were actually really important – as if they were urgent and as if they really mattered!
Not surprisingly, my prayer time lasted longer, and I was more focused when I tried praying loudly.
Follow Jesus’ example of praying loudly.
In Hebrews 5:7, the author talks about the way that Jesus prayed:
In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence.
The Gospel record includes (in more than one place) Jesus retreating to solitary places to pray, but most likely, his prayer times weren’t quiet. In the passage from Hebrews, the Greek word behind the translation for ‘loud’ is ischuros. Ischuros can mean strong, powerful, mighty, or robust. In other words, Jesus wasn’t praying some monotone quiet prayers; he was praying with loud passion.
If you can relate to being easily distracted in your prayer times, then try some ischuros prayers. If you’re not used to praying loudly, you may need to drink some coffee or walk around on your first attempt. But you may also be surprised at how easy it comes.
And just as Jesus did, remember that your prayers are to Him who is able to save you from death. Amen!
What are some out-of-the-box things you do in your prayer and devotional times? Share them in the comment section below.
Olive Tree: the Bible Study App.
I loved this post from Andrew Fouché of Olive Tree: the Bible Study App. I immediately thought of the seasons of motherhood (I should have said parenthood – sorry, Andrew!) when your children are tiny, and you barely have time to eat, sleep, or bathe.
Many times during that period, especially, I remember feeling unfocused at prayer!
I liked Andrew’s suggestion to try praying loudly (or at least out loud) and with passion! And an added benefit… your children will see their mom and dad praying and hear them as well.
Your children can’t have much better modeling than that!
May we all grow in our prayer life!
P.S. If you have never checked Olive Tree: the Bible Study App, you should! It offers many Bible study resources, including study notes, commentaries, dictionaries, sermons, maps, Bible translations, and more.
Many books and references can even be downloaded for free on your iPhone, desktop, iPad, Mac, Kindle, etc. And then you can sync them! Several portable resources are extremely useful, whether at home or on the road. Additionally, the staff is friendly and helpful; the first time I contacted someone there, it turned out that he was a former homeschooler! That always makes my homeschool mama heart happy.