How Should I Pray?
“This, then, is how you should pray…” – Matthew 6:9
Having a personal prayer plan can enhance your prayer experience. In Matthew 6:9-13, Jesus teaches believers to pray in a certain way. A plan will provide direction and focus in your prayer life. Our desire should be to encounter the God who answers prayer. Believers should resist the temptation to allow this or any other plan to become a means to an end. Jesus warns against prayer being treated as simply a ritual or religious activity (see Matthew 6:7-8). Jesus told his disciples,
“This, then, is how you should pray: Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one.” Matthew 6:9-13
The Lord’s Prayer is a model to guide us in prayer each day. The outline of the Lord’s Prayer begins with worship, so we will praise God for being our Father and approach Him in that context. Next, we make three declarations: “Your name be holy,” “Your kingdom come,” and “Your will be done.” This is followed by three requests: “Give me daily bread,” “Forgive my sins,” and “Keep me from evil.” Finally, we will exalt God’s kingdom and end with praising Him. This whole model fits squarely within Jesus’ instruction, “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well” (Matthew 6:33).
Use the Prayer Guide below to help guide you in your personal prayer time.
The Lord’s Prayer Guide
“Our Father, in heaven” – Father, I praise You for who You are. You are my shield and my deliverer, my fortress and my rock. You are the Creator of everything, the Ruler of all, and perfect in all Your ways. You are the Father of Mercies, abounding in love, and slow to anger. Today, I begin my day by praising You.
“Your name be holy” – I declare that Your name is holy. It is the Name that is above every name. Today, I bow my heart in submission and remove all of the things that want to take Your place in my heart. I will live to magnify your Name.
JEHOVAH JIREH (The Lord Will Provide) Genesis 22:13-14
JEHOVAH NISSI (The Lord My Banner) Exodus 17:15
JEHOVAH RAAH (The Lord My Shepherd) Psalm 23:1
JEHOVAH RAPHA (The Lord My Healer) Exodus 15:26
JEHOVAH TSIDKENU (The Lord Our Righteousness) Jeremiah 23:6
JEHOVAH M’KADDESH (The Lord Who Sanctifies You) Leviticus 20:8
JEHOVAH SHALOM (The Lord is Peace) Judges 6:24
JEHOVAH SHAMMAH (The Lord is There, He is Present) Ezekiel 48:35
“Your kingdom come” – I declare that Your kingdom will be expanded today. I know that the Spirit of the Lord is upon me and that You have anointed me to encourage the suffering, help the brokenhearted, and proclaim liberty to the prisoners. Today, I want to see with Your eyes. Guide my steps so that I might encounter someone who needs Your love.
“Your will be done” – I declare that I will submit to Your will. I don’t have the power, the strength, the wisdom or the authority to lead my life the way you do. So, I step down off of the throne of my heart and I give that place to you. You are my king. I will say what you want me to say. I will do what you want me to do. And I will go where you want me to go.
“Give me daily bread” – Father, I ask You for daily bread. Your Word says that You will supply all my needs according to your riches. You know exactly what I need today so I trust You to be my provider.
“Forgive my sins” – Father, search my heart to see if there is any wicked way in me. I confess ____________ and I ask You to forgive my sin. Create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit in me.
“Keep me from evil” – Father, I ask for Your help to be victorious in the face of temptation. Help me to see the way out that You have provided. I take every evil thought captive and make it obedient to Christ. Protect my life and my family from the enemy’s plan to steal, kill, and destroy.
Father, I worship You as You are seated on the throne above every kingdom of this earth. I choose to serve You today. Every breath that I breathe comes from You, so I give You my day and I commit to serve You.