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Prayer and Personality

By on August 27, 2017

Introduction: Both Jesus and his disciples were Jews. As such, they had been brought up with specific, set prayers. Devout Jews would repeat these twice a day. Rabbis often taught their students additional prayers, and one day Jesus’ disciples asked for one. Jesus taught them this: “When you pray, say: Father, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. Give us each day our daily bread. And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us. And do not bring us to the time of trial. (Luke 11 :2-4) The Lord’s Prayer is the most well-known and often used prayer in Christianity. However, different persons may need different prayers to feel connected to God.

Some people have trouble praying: Prayer comes naturally for some Christians, but it is difficult for others. If you struggle with your prayer life, you may even be tempted to quit praying. However, instead of quitting, you may simply want to consider a new approach. Based on your personality, you may find that certain forms of prayer are better able to draw you into the presence of God.

Different Models
* If you are a person who enjoys poetry, pray by reading and learning the Psalms. The Psalms can give us new language to pray to God in a very frank and uninhibited manner.
* If you are a person who regularly runs or walks outdoors, use that time to pray. Instead of using your ear buds to listen to music or podcasts, use the time to pray for the persons who live in each
home you pass. Or pray with thanksgiving for everything you see and feel.
* The arts can also be helpful. If you appreciate art, use visual art – like icons – to help you focus on God. If you love classical music, play music to ease your spirit and lead you into prayer.
* If you are a deep, logical and analytical thinker, your prayer life might be enhanced by great devotional literature. Consider reading modem classics by C.S. Lewis, Henri Nowen or Richard Foster. As you read these or other works, allow questions to surface and take them to God.
* If you are very tactile in nature, utilize prayer aids you can touch -like prayer beads. For example, make a strand of prayer beads using seven beautiful stones and pray for the seven fruits of the Spirit:
love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness and joy.

Practice, Practice, Practice
Even prayer that is matched to your personality will sometimes feel empty. But don’t give up. Keep up the practice of prayer. Regular prayer puts us in a position to better hear God.

To Learn More:
* To learn more about how your personality impacts prayer, worship and other spiritual practices, read “Knowing Me, Knowing God” by Malcolm Goldsmith.
* To explore different dozens of different ways to pray, read “Paths to Prayer” by Patricia Brown.

Prayer Block Prayers:

MONDAY
A prayer by John Wesley

Help and guide us Lord to:
Do all the good we can,
By all the means we can,
In all the ways we can,
In all the places we can,
To all the people we can,
As long as ever we can. Amen.

TUESDAY

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things
I cannot change, courage to change the things
I can, and wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time,
enjoying one moment at a time, accepting
hardship as a pathway to peace, taking, as
Jesus did, this sinful world as it is, not as I
would have it, trusting that You will make
all things right, if I surrender to Your will,
so that I may be reasonably happy in this life,
and supremely happy with You forever in
the next. Amen.

WEDNESDAY
The Prayer of St Francis of Assisi

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
where there is sadness, joy. Amen.

THURSDAY
(ACTS Prayer)

Adoration: Lord, I worship and
adore you because you are …

Confession: Lord, I confess that I
have failed to be an obedient Christian
today. I have …. (your confession)
I ask for your forgiveness.

Thanksgiving: Lord I thank you for …

Supplication: Lord, I ask …

FRIDAY
(Five Finger Prayer)

Your thumb is closest to you.
Begin by praying for those persons
who are closest to you.
Our pointing finger is next.
Pray for those who teach, instruct and heal.
The tallest finger reminds us of our leaders.
Pray for those who lead our nation.
Our ring finger is our weakest finger.
Pray for the weak, ill, or troubled.
Last comes our little finger.
Pray for yourself.

SATURDAY

Lord, make our church a light to our
community and the world. Let our
thoughts, words and actions give you
honor and glory. May we set an example
for all in our speech, life, love and faith.
Bless our church and keep us. Make your
face to shine upon us in all our ministries
and be gracious to us. Turn your face
toward us and give us peace. Amen.

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Contemporary Worship 9:00am - Sunday Study Groups 10:10am - Traditional Worship 11:00am

7050 Village Center Drive, Austin, TX 78731 512.345.1743 info@NWHillsUMC.org