What is the Best Way to Pray?
What is the best way to pray? Most of us don’t think about how we actually pray. We just tell God a few things. Then ask Him a few things. All the while throwing in a few statements about His greatness and our trust in Him.
We know that prayer is communication with God. But, what if there is actually more going on? What if it is transforming who we are? Are our prayers really accomplishing this?
There is Power in Daily Declarations
I was thinking about what I would write this week, and felt an impression to write about daily declarations. The more I prayed about this; the more excited I became on the topic. Declarations are not universally practiced, but they are a powerful way to pray.
This week we will look at five reasons to have daily declarations. Next week we will look at two simple ways to practice them. I believe if you start the habit of incorporating daily declarations into your prayer life, you will see dramatic changes. Here are the five reasons why I believe this:
1. Bring Heaven to Earth
When we look at the examples of the early believers in Acts, we see a very different way to pray than what we commonly practice. Peter tells the lame beggar, “In the name of Jesus of Nazareth, walk” (Acts 3:6). Ananias commands Saul to be filled with the Holy Spirit (Acts 9:17). Paul declares the lame man to stand and demons to come out of the servant girl (Acts 14:10 & 16:18).
We are told if we ask anything according to His will, it will be done (1 John 5:14). We are told to pray that God’s will be done… on earth as it is in heaven (Matthew 6:9-10). When we make declarations we are listening to what God wants to do and speaking them on earth. We bring heaven to earth by declaring His realities here.
2. Co-Create With God
We are created in the image of God, and He created the world by speaking it into existence. We are made to do this as well. Our words have power. “The tongue has the power of life and death and those who love it will eat its fruit” (Proverbs 18:21).
Our words create realities. As they are made in agreement with heaven, they bring life; when they are not, they bring death. All of God’s words bring life. We get the privilege of joining with Him as we declare His realities on earth.
3. Focus on Solutions
Most of our prayers tend to focus on fixing problems. “Oh Lord, fix this. Give me that.” Declarations are prayers as if God’s solution is already in place. Declarations focus on God’s provisions instead of our lack. They put us in a better place because they remind us that God is in control, He is not worried, and we have reason to hope.
Most people don't think about the power of their words. If you would like to learn more, check out these books: Declarations: Unlocking Your Future by Steve Backlund (I highly recommend this one), The Power of Your Words by Robert Morris, and Speak Life: Creating Your World With Your Words by Katherine Ruonala.
4. Transform Our Mind
Our main spiritual battle is with our minds, and our experiences and life stories tell us to believe things contradictory to God’s truths. When we start to believe these lies, they become more and more real to us because our experience tells us they are true.
The main reason we are not seeing heaven’s realities is because we are not believing them to be true. We need to make a choice to believe God over any experience or other belief we may have. This is done by declaring His truths. We overcome lies by replacing it with truth.
As we hear ourselves speaking out God’s truths, we are conditioned to start believing them. The reason Romans 10:9 says we are to declare with our mouth that Jesus is Lord in addition to believing with our heart is that we are making a mental consent to what the Spirit is trying to say to our heart. Speaking truth solidifies it in our hearts.
5. Activate Our Faith
God’s word reveals many things that are hard for us to believe. As we declare them, we are saying that we chose to believe what God says over what we currently feel to be true. Our experiences may say one thing, but declaring God’s truth activates our faith in another direction.
Speaking God’s truth refocuses us to what God is saying. We are saying we choose to believe God’s realities over anything else we see. It is a decree of faith that brings life and pleases God because without faith, it is impossible to please God (Hebrews 11:6).
It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.” Since we have that same spirit of faith, we also believe and therefore speak, because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you to himself. All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.
Therefore we do not lose heart. – 2 Corinthians 4:13-16
Obviously, people can use declarations improperly. They can do the same with prayer, but that doesn’t diminish its role. Next week we will look at some examples how to make regular declarations. For now, realize they are a powerful way to pray.