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How to Make Prayer a Habit

Use these eight tips to make time for God every day.

Woman in bed learning how to make prayer a habit
Credit: Getty Images/iStockphoto
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Why Make Prayer a Habit?

Our faith is like a muscle—we need to take the time to stretch it and exercise it. Regular prayer can be a powerful way to do this. Make a positive habit of sitting in silence, closing our eyes, and reaching out to God with our personal thoughts and hopes.

However, between busy schedules of work, errands, chores, family time, and getting those eight hours of sleep, it can be hard to find time to connect with God. Instead of making prayer an every-once-and-a-while practice, incorporate it into your daily or weekly schedule. By making prayer a habit—like drinking a cup of coffee in the morning or brushing our teeth before bed—we can be sure our time with God is built into our day. Even praying or practicing some spiritual meditation for just a few minutes a day can make a difference.

Girl in a white tshirt with her hands on her heart learning how to make prayer a habit

The Benefits of Regularly Prayer:

According to an article shared by the Association for Psychological Science, there are various benefits to prayer and spiritual meditation, including:

  • Decrease in anxiety and stress
  • Having a more positive mood
  • Calming down the nervous systems
  • Feeling a sense of emotional support
  • Reacting less to negative emotions
  • Feeling less angry

Perhaps the most fascinating find was that prayer can foster a sense of connection, whether with a higher power, the environment around us, or other people in our lives.

8 Steps on How to Make Prayer a Habit:

Man in a yellow sweater with blue background making a prayer habit

1. Make a commitment to pray

Sit down with Jesus and ask Him to help you set a realistic prayer goal. It’s better to start with one prayer period a day, adding more after daily prayer becomes an established positive habit.

READ MORE: To Start a New Habit, Do this First

Woman sitting in bed and saying her morning prayer habit

2. Schedule prayer time into your day

Find the time that’s best for you so that God gets the best of you—when you’re most alert. That may be right when you wake up, when you can sit with a cup of coffee or tea and approach God with your morning prayers. Or it may be in the middle of the day while you are at work, when you can take a much needed break and turn to God for guidance or comfort. Your prayer time may be at the end of the day, when you can say bedtime prayers to speak with God about your day and find some peace.

Woman in her pajamas drinking coffee and saying her daily prayer habit

3. Establish a regular place for prayer

By doing this, when you enter that special room and sit in that same chair, your mind automatically begins to tune in to the Lord. It should be a place where you can be alone, without being interrupted.

READ MORE: Amy Grant, Bear Grylls and Others Share Their Favorite Prayer Spots

Woman sitting outside with headphones on doing a prayer habit

4. Minimize distractions

Take the phone off the hook or ask whoever’s home to take calls. If you can’t find a quiet place to pray, buy a pair of earplugs or noise-cancelling headphones.

Woman in a white sweater with her hand on her heart saying her prayer habit

5. Shorten instead of skipping

On those days when you absolutely cannot get in your full prayer time, you can at least offer an abbreviated prayer. Consider praying just one word, like “blessing,” “direction,” or “thanks.” Five minutes with the Lord are better than no time at all. Just be sure you shorten only on the days when that’s the only alternative to skipping prayer.

READ MORE: 18 Best Micro Habits to Improve Your Life in Minutes

Woman in a yellow sweater writing in her journal how to make prayer a habit

6. Keep a prayer diary

It takes just minutes to record the date and any insights that come to you from your time with the Lord, I like to note specific prayer requests and people I’ve prayed for. When you look back through your diary, you’ll be amazed at the number of prayers the Lord has answered, the surprising ways He has done it, the steady movement of His Spirit in my life.

Two people holding hands and doing their daily prayer habit

7. Find a prayer partner 

Pick a prayer partner who is reliable and can join you in regular prayer. Agree on a daily time and stick with it. If you can’t meet in person, telephone is just as good!

Woman outside in the sunshine with her eyes closed saying a prayer habit

8. Give thanks for your inarticulate prayers

Remind yourself that even if you go through periods where your prayers feel dry and inarticulate, this is precisely the time when the Lord is working behind the scenes to prepare you to come closer to Him. Be patient with your prayers and consider reading Bible verses about prayer to inspire you.

READ MORE: 6 Ways to Build Up Your Prayer Life By Habit Stacking

Bible Verses About the Importance of Prayer:

 

Woman on a beach with a bible in her lap doing her daily prayer habit

  • Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray, and spent the night praying to God. —Luke 6:12
  • O Lord, in the morning you hear my voice; in the morning I plead my case to you and watch. —Psalm 5:3
  • Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful. —Colossians 4:2
  • Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know. —Jeremiah 33:3
  • For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them. —Matthew 18:20
  • And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people. —Ephesians 6:18
  • Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. —1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
  • Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. —Romans 12:12
  • But when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. —Matthew 6:6
  • Very early in the morning, while it was still dark, Jesus got up, left the house and went off to a solitary place, where he prayed. —Mark 1:35

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