TYPES OF PRAYER
- Praise and Worship is an expression of admiration and devotion to God.
‘Not to us, O LORD, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness.’
- Worship God for who He is: the One who created you – for His unfailing Word – for your salvation – that you are included in His purpose…
- It is to exalt and honour God.
- It is to acknowledge God for who He is, to exalt God with your words, your whole being and with your attitude in prayer.
- Worship Him for His Name. His righteousness, love, holiness, omnipotence, greatness, faithfulness, omnipresence, His Word, His Creation, His work of redemption, etc. You may want to choose a different theme for each period of praise and worship. Expand on this theme as much as possible, meditate on it and ponder on the practical implications for your life and the lives of other people.
- Waiting on the Lord is an act of surrender to, and of love and admiration for God, (often wordless worship).
‘Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.’
- This is a time of silence before God.
- Where I spiritually close the door to any influence from the world.
- Where I enter into His presence by an act of faith.
- It is a time to worship and praise God for who He is.
- During this period of silence we tune in to God Himself and direct our whole being to Him and commit ourselves to Him anew. We rejoice in and over His presence.
- This is a time of deep personal and intimate communication between God and ourselves; it is me as the limited and finite being coming into the presence of God as the unlimited and infinite Being.
- We make sure at this point that we are in contact with God. This time of waiting on the Lord cannot be hurried; there is no place for impatience and haste during this time.
- During this time you think of nothing but God the Father, His Son Jesus your Redeemer, and the Holy Spirit.
- You need not express your thoughts in words. Concentrate on your relationship with the Lord and your love for Him.
- Confession of sin and humiliation is an act of admitting my sinfulness to God and of cleansing me as the Temple of God, allowing me entrance into His presence.
‘Surely the arm of the LORD is not too short to save, nor his ear too dull to hear. But your iniquities have separated you from your God; your sins have hidden his face from you, so that he will not hear.’
1 JOHN 1:9
‘If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.’
- This is the time to confess my sins by name, admit that I am wrong and turn from my sins and accept God’s forgiveness.
- Where I ask God to cleanse me of any form of pride and lack of love.
- This is a time of introspection and allowing the Holy Spirit to reveal all unconfessed sins. We receive our salvation and the forgiveness of our sins solely through the blood of the Lord Jesus. On the grounds of His death on the Cross.
- When confessing my sins I don’t ask God to change my circumstances, but that He will change and forgive me.
- Praying Scripture is to feed myself spiritually and to pray according to God’s agenda and revelation.
- This is Word-enriched prayer – The Word is our prayer manual.
- It is to pray God’s promises to Him. God’s promises in the Word create faith in our hearts.
- In the first place, the Bible is a book that needs to be believed and obeyed.
- During this time I ask God; “Lord, what promises can I claim for me, what commands must I obey, what warnings I must pay attention to?”
- We must remind the Lord of His promises in the Word day and night. As we read the Word we must ask the Lord how to apply it in our lives and in our prayer time.
- Watching is a time of spiritual observation (perception), to be on the look-out, to be spiritually aware of matters to pray for.
‘Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.’
- A time to be especially wary and alert for the possible onslaughts of the devil. Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to show you the plans, methods, strongholds and strategies of the evil one.
- To be alert to any prompting of the Lord.
- To be mindful of any revelation from God.
- Ask for insight, discernment, wisdom, to know on what to focus and what your priorities should be.
- To understand the will of God and where He wants to use you today.
- To ask the Lord what is on His heart and on His agenda.
- Are there things reported in the newspapers, on the radio or television that we should pray for. Things like economic problems, political unrest, wars, etc. that God wants us to pray for.
- Intercession is to pray for others, to concentrate on the needs and distress of other people, to stand in the gap for someone else.
1 Timothy 2:1-2 I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for everyone—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.
- To pray for God’s purpose in the lives of others.
- To stand between God and other people and pray for their needs – to ask for mercy and grace.
- It is a spiritual position before God – to remain standing until you have the assurance that God heard and release you of the burden to pray for this issue.
- It is God’s method of getting His children involved in His plan for the world.
- When you intercede you stand at God’s side and you work with Him for the salvation or benefit of someone else.
“Spiritual warfare” may be included in your time of prayer. Pray and ask the Lord to show you through the working of the Holy Spirit where the powers of evil is at work. On the authority that you have in Christ and in the Name of Jesus bind the evil forces, break their strongholds and resist them. Resist the devil; don’t give him a hold in your life. Jesus conquered the evil one on the cross. We, the believers, must proclaim this victory on all spheres of life. This aspect of spiritual warfare will also be part of the prayer periods of watching, petition and personal prayer.
- Petition for your personal needs.
‘Give us today our daily bread.’
‘Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.’
- To pray for my “daily bread.”
- To bring my own distress, emotions, crisis situations, needs and desires before God.
- I come to God in total dependence and humility and ask Him to provide in all my needs. I come to God as His servant and child.
- Be specific.
- As believers we may come to the Father and pray for our personal needs and we can pray expectantly ever for the smallest things.
- Watch out for selfish motives.
8. Thanksgiving is a time to acknowledge our appreciation to the Lord for His care and protection and for who He is.
1 THESSALONIANS 5:18
‘Give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.’
- Think about the day and thank God for His care and provision for you and for others.
- Thank the Lord for new things He has done and still do, spiritual, material, physical and social.
- Thank the Lord for who He is His gifts, answers to prayer and for all His blessings.
- Be specific in your thanksgiving.
- Song is melodious praise and worship.
‘Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth. Worship the LORD with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the LORD is God. It is he, who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.’
- This is an act of worship and praise to God with spiritual songs.
- This can be a battle cry against the powers of darkness. Song and spiritual warfare (our battle against the evil one) are inextricably linked to each other.
- You can use existing songs or you can sing your own new songs. You can start by taking parts of Scripture and change it into songs.
- This is to express admiration, worship and glorification to God through song.
- Meditation means to reflect upon or examine a matter more closely and to evaluate it spiritually.
‘Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked …… But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.
- Think about the Being and nature of the Triune God, His creation and great deeds and His character.
- Take a specific theme from Scripture and meditate on it (righteousness, love, truth, light, peace, holiness, etc).
- Take a portion of Scripture and meditate on it.
- Make God the main focus of your meditation; His works, His Word, His character.
In what way is Christian meditation different from Eastern meditation? In Eastern Meditation the focus is on a passive state of mind and the aim is to “empty” your mind. To the Christian meditation is an active process of evaluating, investigating,
(enquiry) and pondering, involving your whole mind and being, while allowing the Holy Spirit and Scriptures to lead you.
Christian meditation is to ponder in a disciplined way. Beware that Satan does not plant his thoughts in your mind. Also beware of negative thoughts during this time. Consider everything that is true, pure, noble, right, beautiful and praiseworthy. When you meditate on a certain portion of Scripture you must ask yourself among other things, what this portion means to you.
11. Listening is a period in which you receive instruction from the Lord and ask Him to reveal to you the things that He wants you to notice and pay attention to.
‘Do not be quick with your mouth, do not be hasty in your heart to utter anything before God. God is in heaven and you are on earth, so let your words be few.’
- It is to listen to the inner voice of the Holy Spirit.
- During this period you ask; “Lord, what do You expect me to do? What is Your will for me for today?”
- To receive and ask for guidance from the Word of God.
- To deliberately ask God to reveal His will and strategies or plans to you.
- In waiting on the Lord the emphasis is on loving God. During meditation we want to learn more from God. During the period of listening we want to hear what God wants to say to us.
- You can ask the Lord specific questions, perhaps some difficult questions that you do not have the answers to. Be sensitive to the Holy Spirit.
- Be careful not to say immediately: “The Lord said this and that to me.”
- Worship is to exalt and glorify God. To tell Him that you know who He is and to whom you are praying and that you trust Him with your supplications.
‘…For yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’
- Let your Amen be strong at the end and confirm thus that you believe that God has heard you and will answer you. Amen means: it is true and sure, so shall it be.
- This is the final spiritual act of putting God on the throne of your life.
- This is where you declare: Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory for ever. Amen.