When I first became a Christian about 11 years ago I had a really hard time praying out loud. In fact, I avoided it at all costs! It felt forced and I just didn’t know what to say.
As time went on and my relationship with The Lord grew, I began to participate in prayer groups occasionally. I was so awkward! I rarely spoke up, and when I did, I paid way too much attention to how others were praying or how I thought I must sound to them.
While I think this reaction is normal among newbie Christians (and even not-so-newbies), if this is still a struggle for you, I encourage you to push past it no matter how long it takes!
Praying Out Loud is Important
With practice and the determination to honor God and bless others through prayer, I eventually got over my awkwardness. If I feel it creeping in, I remind myself to just have a conversation with God about what’s on my heart, and not worry about how my words sound to the other person.
Most is the chapters in Week 5 of Becoming a Prayer Warrior are about situations where we are praying out loud: with our spouses, while teaching our children how to pray, with friends, and in leading others. Yes, it is awkward at first. But it’s worth pushing through.
As Susan says, “Remember that fear of man brings a snare (Proverbs 29:25). Don’t be ruled by what other people think of you. I much prefer a broken person blurting out a true prayer than a polished prayer with no heart engaged. So does God.”
Get Comfortable Praying Out Loud
- Don’t try to copy others. While I found it helpful to hear others pray, I learned to avoid trying to use their words or mannerisms in my prayers. If I’m concerned about doing it “right,” I’m not concerned about praying my heart and praying as the Spirit leads.
- Embrace child-like prayer. God loves the prayers of a child! I’m convinced He loves it when we pray with a child-like heart as well: genuine, simple, and true to our relationship with Him.
- Pray out loud when you’re alone. This really helps get over the whole thought-to-speech issue I had. Praying out loud when I’m alone also helps keep me focused and makes it more like a conversation with God without so many thought wanderings.
- Pray the scriptures. As you are reading your Bible, notice a scripture that stands out to you and pray through it. For example, for Romans 12:2: “Thank you, God, that your will is good and perfect and true. Help me to discern it. Transform my mind by your Spirit so that I can.” This is an especially fun way to pray for and over your children!
- Start with simple situations. If you are new to praying out loud, start simple. Pray out loud when you are alone. Hug your husband and say a short prayer for his day. Bless your children at night before they go to bed.
What do you think? What is one thing you can practice today to grow in this area of your prayer life? May we honor God and bless our spouses, children, friends, and others!
Read the rest of the posts from the Faithful Prayer series!