But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father whois in the secret place; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly. Matthew 6.6
One of the greatest problems that Christians have when it comes to pray is completely practical in nature. We all know that we should pray. We long to pray. We feel guilty for not praying. We know that we should make time for prayer and devote energy to it. However, for most of our lives we have been encouraged to pray, but given very little instruction on how to pray.
Jesus words in Matthew 6 are intended to be instructive for followers of Christ. This is a simple 'how-to-pray' seminar for the disciples. Today, I want to offer a similar Introductory prayer survey for everyone who is interested.
The most important thing is to pray. Too often we study about prayer. We read books on prayer and we listen to teachings on prayer. Sometime you must stop all of those things and pray.
Write your prayers. This will give you some structure and limits. You will be able to focus better and get to the point. Also, writing forces you to slow down. This will allow you to hear what God is saying.
Make a conscious decision (commitment) to pray. Forget that deception from the enemy that convinces you that you will "get around to it." Pick a time and place to pray.
Read a passage of Scripture and pray about what you have read. Use Matthew 6 and ask God to reveal his word to you in a personal way.
Find a prayer partner. There is someone who would love to work with you on prayer. You do not have to pray together, but you can check with one another on your progress and make sure that you are doing what you need to.
Pray before every meal. This will help you get into the habit. Find other times to get into the habit of praying. Pray before bed time, before getting out of bed, before driving, before a meeting, before a test, after work...
There is no magic formula for prayer. What works for me may not work for anyone else, but I guarantee that something will work for you. Pray about it. God does want you to pray and he will actually make it somewhat easy for you.