Exploring the Meaning of Prayer: A Guide for Beginners


As a young adult who has grown up in the church, I have interacted with prayerful people who have taught me the importance of prayer. Initially, I knew that prayer is how Christians communicate with God, but recently, I wanted to dig deeper into the meaning of prayer and how someone who has never prayed can build a culture of praying.

What is prayer according to scripture?

Prayer in the Bible is how believers of God talk to him. It is how they make their praise and requests known. The scriptures are filled with beautiful examples of people praying to God asking for various gifts ranging from strength, guidance, healing, and many more. Even Jesus, despite being God’s child, knew the importance of prayer and he engaged in long prayer sessions to speak to his father.

As a Christian, I can learn from the prayers of the Bible. Answered prayers can encourage one to build hope in God. This leads to what the purpose of prayer in our lives is. If we do not understand the purpose of prayer in the Bible, it becomes so hard to understand the purpose of prayer in our lives.

From the Bible, we have learned that prayer makes one’s requests known to God. That is exactly why Christians pray today to speak to God and ask for healing, forgiveness, and direction. Prayer is the best strategy to build a deeper relationship with God and how Christians know the direction they want to go in life.

“Call to Me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” Jeremiah 33:33

The above verse is an assurance that God is listening to our prayers and through his power, he can grant us new revelations to make our lives better. For example, Abraham’s prayer for Sodom and Gomorrah saved Lot’s family. Hannah’s prayer saw her bear a son at a peculiar age. This shows that God is capable of fulfilling our innermost desires when we pray about them.

How can someone who has never prayed develop that culture?

For starters, one can begin to pray with a journal. This might sound odd but writing out prayers and thoughts can allow one to slow down and consider them deeply. One can write down bible verses that stand out and ask questions about the feelings the passage evokes and what God would want to hear based on the scripture. Getting answers to such questions can help one gain a sense of direction about where to start.

The second tip is to take a walk with God. Even Jesus formed the most meaningful relationships on earth by walking with people day after day. Therefore, scheduling some time to connect with God the way you would connect with your peers can develop a deep connection with God making it easier to send your requests to him.

Thirdly, pray with other people. The Bible acknowledges that wherever two or more people are gathered, God is among them. Therefore, finding people with a prayerful culture can help build one’s confidence to spearhead spiritual growth. However, praying with others should not be turned into a show-off as that would sabotage its true essence.

Now that you understand the basics of prayer and how to pray, all that remains is to begin. The aim is not to become an expert but simply to move deeper into a relationship with your creator. As with any relationship, the things you say in prayer will develop as you build more trust in God.


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