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As you probably know, our featured class this month is called Prayer Secrets. And it's free through the month of April. This week's memo adds right to that theme of prayer. Enjoy the reading, then head right over to the class and sign up if you haven't already!

A Bible and praying hands

Many people find growing in prayer a challenge. And there are plenty of opinions out there about how to improve. In the paragraphs below, I'd like to share one of the things that helped me learn to pray. It's something I call Scriptural Praying.

And I stumbled on to it by accident.

Prayer & Scripture

From the first years of my Christian journey, I felt it was important to connect prayer and Scripture. Memorizing verses like John 15:7If ye abide in me, and my words abide in you, ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you. and Romans 10:17So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. strengthened that conviction. So I made it a point to attach specific promises to specific requests and claim them.

Later, I began to understand experientially the prayerful state we should be in when studying, and conversely, the need to listen for God speaking back through memorized verses when in prayer. In time, the link between prayer and Scripture became so close it was not always clear how to distinguish between them.

“Prayer and Scripture are so closely connected, it's not always easy to distinguish between them.”

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At some point, the idea occurred to me to use Scripture as a framework for prayer. I would focus my prayer time on the beatitudes in Matthew 5--asking God to build each characteristic into my life. Or I would pray through the Ten Commandments in Exodus 20, asking God to search my heart for pockets of sin I had not seen before. Or I would pray through Ephesians 6, asking God specifically to equip me with each piece of spiritual armor.

It was a simple process. I would find a passage appropriate to my needs and turn to it in my Bible. Then I would go through the passage verse by verse, slowly, simply talking with God about what each verses said. And listening. After a few moments, I'd proceed to the next verse and continue. I could go as fast or as slow as I wanted.

It was always powerful.

Useful Passages

In time, I found many more passages that were useful for this kind of prayer. Psalms of praise. Praying through a string of proverbs--asking God for the wisdom of Solomon. And of course, many of Paul's epistles were filled with amazing statements about God's will for the believers he was writing. And there were plenty of model prayers recorded in Scripture I could pattern my prayers after. Even parables and familiar Bible stories, were easy to take and adapt to situations in my life. The more I looked, the more I found.

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Incorporating Scripture into my prayer life helped me stay focused. It also strengthened my faith, because I knew my requests were in line with God's will. In fact, they weren't just in harmony with Scripture, they were sparked by Scripture as the Holy Spirit spoke to my heart.

And this practice further deepened my conviction that prayer and Scripture are two sides of the same coin. Communication with God. Intimacy. The divine encounter. They shouldn't be disconnected.

Why not give Scriptural praying a try for your self?



Comments

What do you think of the suggestions in this article? Do you use Scripture in your prayers? How has it impacted your prayer life? How important is it to link prayer and Scripture together? Share a thought in the comments below...

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Posted by Dan Vis on 02/03/23
Glad that class was helpful to you Carlota! And I like that verse too. One of the most beautiful verses anywhere! :)
Posted by Carlota Belmo on 02/03/23
I’m glad that I’ve taken the Prayer secrets class. It has helped in my prayers. when I include the scriptures I feel like I’m being heard and answered and it makes more sense to me. I now include that Psalms 143:8Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee. it means so much to me. Thanks Dan.
Posted by Dan Vis on 02/02/23
I'm glad you've been growing in this area Barbara. It's so important. I really love the way you described the impact of what you are doing: "It really opens up your world to God's word." Great post!
Posted by Barbara E. LaRose on 01/31/23
In the past I had claimed scriptures in a very haphazard way. But since last year I really started to add scriptures to my prayer journal on the Fast Site Prayer Journal and in my binder prayer journal. It really has opened my eyes to the importance of claiming scriptures to that request and I find that daily as I go over them I'm learning those scriptures. It really opens up your world to God's word.
Posted by Dan Vis on 11/28/22
Yes, that's a great passage I've used several times Linda, but it's just one of many. So many passages lend themselves to this kind of prayer. I encourage you to try some different ones and see how it goes...
Posted by Linda Johnson on 11/27/22
I do use Scripture and claim Bible promises for myself and my loved ones. And thank you pastor Don for telling us how you pray, and I especially liked when you said you pray thru Ephesians 6 on putting on the full armour of God. I think that would be very help for me.   
Posted by Dan Vis on 11/21/22
I may not have explained this very well. It's not just reading the verses prayerfully Linda, it's reading a verse (or part of a verse) and then praying about what the verse says in your own words. Then moving on to the next part of the passage and continuing on. So we are just using the Scriptures as a framework for much more conversational prayer with God... Hope that makes sense!

When does this way it does feel much more like a conversation, and draws us into the very heart and mind of God!
Posted by Linda Johnson on 11/20/22
Reading/Praying each verse of Scripture I am reading out loud as a prayer is a wonderful suggestion. I agree, it will build more intimacy for me with the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit.
Posted by Dan Vis on 10/31/22
That's a great verse Linda! I've always been impressed by Philippians 1:7Even as it is meet for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart; inasmuch as both in my bonds, and in the defence and confirmation of the gospel, ye all are partakers of my grace. which gives the condition for the promise in Philippians 1:6Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:. :)

Thanks for testifying to the power that comes with using God's Word in prayer! It is a blessing to us, spiritually, to do that!
Posted by Linda Johnson on 10/30/22
When I pray God's words back to Him, I have great peace and expectancy. I know God hears His own words, and I am blessed to use them.
I love Philippians 1:6Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ: in praying for loved ones not presently walking with the Lord. I know God is working on their hearts by this passage for the good work He began in them before, He will carry it to completion before He comes. Hallelujah!
Posted by Dan Vis on 10/27/22
I think these are both good points Deanne. Using the Word in our prayers helps remind us God is there, and real. And it shows us God cares about our specific needs. Two good posts! :)
Posted by Deanne Reinke on 10/27/22
when I find a scripture that speaks to my prayer need I am reassured that God is ready to handle any need that I have. It increases my trust and confidence in God. It also gives me strength and courage to hang on when things are tough
Posted by Deanne Reinke on 10/27/22
I feel that I need to claim God's promises to reinforce in my mind that God is REAL & PRESENT. this helps me to BELIEVE that God will do what he says. When I pray using scripture this reinforces in my mind that God cares about what I am telling Him and Asking Him for in my prayers. This brings me closer to Him and helps me to depend on Him in all areas of my life. As God answers my prayers my Faith,/ Belief ,in Him increases and our relationship grows stronger. it is a win/win
Posted by Dan Vis on 10/24/22
Thanks for another testimony on the power of the Word! Powerful Sara. May it inspire all of us to press forward in our memorization. It's worth it!
Posted by Sara Ogle on 10/24/22
Lana I agree! Memorizing scripture has been so helpful in prayer and beyond. I’ll find that as I go about my day, scripture will pop in my head related to something I’m doing. I love the connection to God that comes from putting His words in my heart.
Posted by Dan Vis on 10/22/22
You are very welcome Richard. Glad this was helpful! :)
Posted by Richard on 10/21/22
Powerful,thank you for the insightful thoughts on prayer.
Posted by Dan Vis on 10/21/22
Love your comment Lana. To see people "experimenting" with God in different areas and seeing His principles really do work. What could be more thrilling than that. I love all the great people in our community!
Posted by Lana Rose on 10/21/22
Since I began memorizing more verses, it has become so much easier to use the verses to pray specific requests with. I will be thinking about someone and realize I need to pray for them. The verses pop up and it makes claiming them so practical! I have seen many a prayer
answered this way.
Thanx Dan for all your encouragement to keep experimenting with God and the promises He has for us!
Posted by Dan Vis on 10/16/22
Yes, that's a great example of one way to use Scripture in prayer Tonya. I encourage to explore some of the other methods suggested above. They are all very powerful!

Cool Rebecca. This is something God began teaching me early on. So I'm sure He has worked to teach others also. It was definitely a breakthrough for me in my prayer life.
Posted by Rebecca on 10/14/22
Hey! I've been doing that, and I didn't even know it was a method! I claim the promises of the texts in prayer, going through each word, applying it to myself. Praise God! Thank you for your personal testimony.
Posted by Tonya Anspach on 10/14/22
I believe it is vital to link scripture with prayer. Especially now that we are in end times. There have been times where all I have wanted to do is praise Him in my prayer, but my words never seem sufficient enough to express my thoughts. That's when I go to Psalms and use them to praise His holy name!
Posted by Dan Vis on 10/14/22
Be sure to grab that resource listed above Mike. It's got some really nice passages to try this with initially. Eventually, you can do this with any passage. I've grown accustomed to praying over whatever passage I study that morning--and the principles and projects I've found. So rewarding!
Posted by Mike Carner on 10/14/22
I think this would be a good process to more intentionally include Scripture in my prayers. Really like the idea of the two blending to become one virtually indistinguishable round of communication with God.
Posted by Dan Vis on 10/14/22
I think we instinctively turn toward God in His Word in difficult times, because we need that extra boost to our faith. But I think we can learn to do this in all kinds of situations, and for all kinds of needs. For the same reason! Good post Lindi!
Posted by Lindi on 10/13/22
I have found praying with scripture calms my spirit during times of need. It brings peace, courage, confidence to know that God in whose mouth there is no guile said it. I guess because God has the best interest for each of our lives.    
Posted by Dan Vis on 10/13/22
Ajai, I think the message below is for you... If you wish to respond, click Wayne's name to go to his office, and connect directly.
Posted by Wayne Senner on 10/13/22
I saw your name and confused it with Ajay someone I know from India. My daughter Rebecca is married to a man from Sudan Abdalla is his name. By any chance do you know them?
Posted by Dan Vis on 10/12/22
Yes, awesome Louise! I'm always on the look out for verses to add to my prayer requests. Or even to guide or reshape requests as I understand God's will better. Sometimes God may even impress me to stop praying for some topic. If so, I'll jot that verse down and what I got from it as well. In this way, each request becomes it's own journey...
Posted by Louise P on 10/11/22
I have started using Scripture in my prayers, and my prayer time feels more enriched because of the Scriptures. Sometimes I find more verses that match a request I am praying for - so exciting!
I like what you said about your prayers being sparked by Scripture as the Holy Spirit spoke to your heart. I am good at reading, and talking, and am learning to develop the listening!
Posted by Dan Vis on 10/11/22
That's been my experience too Sam, that using more Scripture in prayer strengthens my faith. I think the balance between boldness and confidence on the one hand, and either doubt or presumption on the other, is to make sure we are talking over these passages with God, listening for Him to make clear we've understood His will in them. Maybe there is some condition we need to meet, or maybe God has a different solution than what we expect.

On the other hand, God may give us a genuine sense of assurance that we've interpreted the passage properly, and our prayer is heard. Then our assurance is rooted in that, not just our own understanding. I have great confidence in God's Word, but not always in my ability to understand it! So I need the Holy Spirit to clearly confirm heaven's plan... And there's a place to continue praying for increased understanding of that plan as circumstances progress and change.
Posted by Shawnda McKnight on 10/11/22
Reciting scripture in prayer has increased my faith. I now ask as if I already have it.. (then I add Lord I beleive, please help my unbelief) I don't want to sound cocky like I got this in the bag...But I do want to be confident knowing that my God will never fail me or forsake me. (Deuteronomy 31:6Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.)
Posted by Dan Vis on 04/07/22
Thank you for your testimony Barbara. The more we mix pray and the Word, the stronger both become. God is good...
Posted by Barbara E. LaRose on 04/07/22
Pastor Dan the suggestion is wonderful. As I started my prayer journal and placed scripture by each persons name to what the need was, I found myself learning even more scripture and the need of knowing these scriptures to share with others as they were going through similar situations. It’s a real faith builder. Prayer really comes to life and you feel so much closer to God.   
Posted by Dan Vis on 04/06/22
I pray you find it a blessing Rhoda! It is a somewhat advanced technique, and it may take a bit of practice to get used to it, but it can be very powerful...
Posted by Rhoda Forbes on 04/06/22
Thank you Pr Dan, this is a new approach to prayer for me, will certainly apply it.
Posted by Dan Vis on 04/05/22
It's a beautiful verse isn't it Terri? We include that in our Basic Training course. But consider trying a longer passage some time and using it as an entire framework for prayer. You could for example try doing that whole chapter, working through it one verse at a time, and spending several minutes on each verse. Looking at it now, it looks like it could be an amazing experience!

Yes! That's the whole point exactly Lana: to "frame our petitions in harmony with the divine design". Not sure where that quote is from, but I love it. And even more the clear reason behind this approach--to bring our prayers into greater harmony with His will. Good post!

Believe it or not Mary, Melody was in one of my very first discipleship teams, back when she was in academy. It's been amazing to see how the Lord has used her! That part about using a passage of Scripture like this to keep our mind focused, and not wandering, is a very important benefit of this approach!
Posted by Mary Nicholas on 04/04/22
Yes, Scriptural praying is awesome- I first learned about it from a presentation by Melody Mason. When you claim God’s promises, they are not returned void. Scriptural praying also keeps my mind focused. My mind tends to wander .
Posted by Lana Rose on 04/04/22
I agree heartily with the thoughts in this reading.
I have been realizing it is by knowing scripture that we can know God's will. I feel it is our duty as Christians "to discover God's will and frame our petitions in harmony with the divine design." (Bible Commentaries on I John 5:14-1514 And this is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask any thing according to his will, he heareth us: 15 And if we know that he hear us, whatsoever we ask, we know that we have the petitions that we desired of him.).
Posted by Terri Krovoza on 04/04/22
I have been trying to do that more often in my prayers since hearing about it. I really love Psalms 143:8Cause me to hear thy lovingkindness in the morning; for in thee do I trust: cause me to know the way wherein I should walk; for I lift up my soul unto thee. and pray it as part of my prayer every morning.
Posted by Dan Vis on 04/04/22
You are very welcome Ajai! Be sure to grab the bonus resource.

The nice thing about this approach Cecilia is you are flexible to switch between focusing more on the verses or more on the conversation as you go through the passage. The Scriptures serve as a basis or starting point, but our prayers can range however far we want as the Holy Spirit guides us. All the best in trying this out.
Posted by Cecilia D Jones on 04/04/22
I think this is a wonderful idea! I will give it a try. I always just talk to God, like having a conversation. I only use scripture as a point of that conversation.   For instance when praying for a sick person I might say something about how he healed the sick while he was here and told us we would do those things and greater things.
Posted by Ajai Mathews Joy on 04/04/22
Thank you for this study...
I am encouraged to try scriptural prayer
Posted by Dan Vis on 08/23/20
Sure, happy to share these resources Bert! Think of them as a birthday present, from us to you. :)
Posted by Bert Hopkins on 08/22/20
ThankYou for the special Scripture study note. And ThankYou for this study. Praise God .I was using it in my prayers occasionally but now will be more focused .
Posted by Dan Vis on 11/26/19
You are very welcome Denise! You can certainly add to the list, but it helps to have a few starter passages to, well, get started! :)
Posted by Denise Buglino on 11/25/19
Thank you for sharing the Scriptural Prayer passages (bonus) compilation Dan.
Posted by Dan Vis on 07/04/19
Glad you liked this Jaslyn! :)
Posted by Jaslyn C on 07/04/19
Wow
Posted by Dan Vis on 06/13/19
You are very welcome Emmanuel! I think you will enjoy it. Be sure to grab the free gift in the memo above!


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