Praying for an hour may sound daunting at first, but it can actually go by faster than you think. Many times when we spend an hour with a close friend, we look up surprised to see the time has passed so quickly and it’s time to part. This is the way to pray and to enjoy prayer, to see it as time spent with a dear friend, Jesus, who we have all to ourselves in sweet private conversation in our personal hour of prayer.
First, you must set aside a specific time to meet, knowing that God will be waiting for you. Make sure you eliminate all distractions by selecting a private place where you can talk in freedom and without being interrupted by phones and other distractions.
All you need is a quiet place and an eager heart, however you may find other supplies useful for prayer aids. Items such as your bible, a pen, paper for scribbling notes or thoughts that come to mind, a journal for writing your prayer if you prefer, a hymnbook, a favorite devotional book, soft instrumental music or soft scriptural lullaby music, a box of Kleenex, a cup of coffee, tea or other favorite drink, a candle or even an old fashioned oil lamp if you prefer.
Once you have selected your place, make yourself aware of the presence of God through faith and His word which says:
“Come near to God and he will come near to you.” James 4:8
Spend time drawing near to God.
10 Mins – Start with a Hymn book, a devotional Book, or open to the book of Psalms. Take time to focus on God and get your heart into the right spirit to pray. Spend time in worship, filling your mind with who God is.
If there is anything in your heart that you feel the need to pour out before the Lord before praying in intercession, any concerns, fears, worries; or anything that you feel pressed to confess, do so now so you can focus on intercession when it’s time to pray for your specific topic. Take time to clean out your heart.
40 Mins – Spend time in intercession for one particular topic or various topics by praying for each topic 10 -15 minutes each. Praying through a list that is prepared beforehand as a meeting agenda, or a specific list of scripture will help you make the most of your time and prevent distraction. Spend a much time on each topic as the Spirit leads. The point is not to cover everything, but to spend quality time with God.
10 Mins – Towards the end of your time, wrap up your prayer time by spending additional time in worship, spend time thanking God for His faithfulness, expressing confidence in His wisdom, His work and His will. Spend time reminding God that you are waiting on Him according to His word and both trusting and hoping in him. Read through the Psalms again and spend time praising God for simply who he is and make sure you leave His presence placing your full trust in Him.
When approaching prayer as spending time with Jesus as your greatest friend, confidant and counselor, you will soon see this sweet hour prayer as going by much too fast instead of too slow.