How to Pray Effectively

How to Pray Effectively
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WHY YOU SHOULD IDENTIFY THE SOURCE OF YOUR STRESS

When dealing with a stressful situation, it is very important to identify the specific source of your stress so that you can manage it effectively. Identifying the root of your problems also reduces your mental burdens when you realize that you are dealing with one major cause rather than multiple different problems. Another advantage of identifying your specific stressor is that it helps you pray more effectively as you are able to precisely target your prayers.

We can see from Matthew 22:32-33 that when Jesus asked the two blind men sitting at the side of the road what they wanted Him to do for them, they replied that they wanted Him to open their eyes. They had identified blindness as their chief source of stress and thus were able to articulate it eloquently to the Lord. They did not say that they wanted to be given a job or money or food or clothes which in all likelihood they were lacking being blind and at the road side. They had identified the root of their problems and they presented it to the Lord because they knew that if this stressful issue of blindness was resolved, they could easily resolve their other problems.

Therefore, if you are in a stressful situation, set aside time to identify what exactly is stressing you. For example, if you "feel stressed" or anxious or on edge every time you go to a certain place or deal with particular people pinpoint exactly what rubs you the wrong way about those people or that particular place.

Is it their attitude towards you or their words or their body language? Is it the noise, the clutter, the colors or the lighting? Is it the air of confusion, indecision, or don't care attitude pervading the place?

Or, is it you stressing yourself by entertaining negative thoughts about your anticipated experiences in that place or with those people? Is it fear? Is it frustration? Is it hopelessness?

Whatever it is, identify the root cause of your stress so that if someone were to ask you "What do you want?", you can answer them unambiguously. Name it clearly so that you can pray over it effectively and then pin it down so that you can plan how to manage it.


Adapted from Rules of Relaxation by Dr. Miriam Kinai (C) 2007. For more info click here.

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