How to Pray to God

The “ACTS” model is just one way to enter into a time of prayer with the living God. I like it because it helps me set my heart straight before God as I am praying and not just spew out some vague prayer. Not that I don’t do that often, or that short, simple prayers are wrong or not specific enough for God to understand, but I love the way the ACTS model makes prayer more worshipful.

silhouette photography of hanging rosary
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I think it is important to reiterate that this model is not the only way to pray. Prayer is talking to God. Simple. The ACTS model create an in-depth prayer posture and is a helpful tool for organizing one’s thoughts and covering all the bases in prayer. That is not to say that one prayer or one prayer session is lesser than another if one part of ACTS is not mentioned. Let’s not get legalistic about praying, people. The truth is, some of y’all may love the ACTS, while some of you find it entirely unhelpful. That is perfectly okay, and each person is entitled to their own opinion. However, on this post, I pray that you read with an open mind and leave encouraged. Let’s jump right into explaining the acryonym.

The “A” stands for adoration. This is a time of lifting up God and acknowledging His attributes. Adoring God just sounds lovely, doesn’t it? It’s a time of speaking the truth about God back to him. It’s affirming truths about God that help expand one’s vision. An example of adoration might sound something like this “Lord Jesus, you existed before the beginning of time and created the stars and the galaxies. You are God over the entire universe and also the God of each of your people’s heart. You are mighty to save, the Lion and the Lamb. We worship you, O God!”

The “C” stands for confession. This is a time to humble oneself before God and confess any sin before God. It’s a time to admit where we have wronged God or others and fallen short of His design and His glory.

The “T” stands for thanksgiving. Transitioning to thanking God helps grow our faith and belief in God’s abilities. It helps us focus on how God has kept His promises and always been faithful. Thanking God helps us trust God more by purposefully acknowledging the goodness that He has blessed our lives with. Thanking God and believing Him for what He will do is part of this segment of ACTS.

And finally, “S” stands for supplication, aka presenting our requests to God (Phil 4:6). At this time, we ask God to meet our needs and the needs of those around us. We cry out to Him and ask for His protection, provision, wisdom, guidance, etc. We call on the great and mighty power of the Lord God who was and is and is to come.

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My own example of ACTS praying earlier this evening:

Adoration: God. You alone are wise. Your wisdom is different from the “wisdom” of the world. Your thoughts are higher than my thoughts. Your ways are higher than my ways. You are high and lifted up and 100% good. You are sovereign, just, perfect, righteous and holy, holy, holy. Father, you are the living water and forever satisfying. You are my strong tower, my rock, my refuge. Father you are the vine from which all life grows out of. You are the Creator of life and all that it entails. You are so creative and awesome.

Confession: Father God, I confess that I do it wrong so often. So often I am led astray by my desires and don’t wait on your provision. God I feel like I’m wandering around in the wilderness sometimes, having passed the same rock over and over again. Sometimes I wonder if I’m ever going to reach my goals. Father I confess that I don’t trust you a lot of the time. I don’t trust your timing since I confess that I’m always running ahead. Lord I feel double-minded at times and hypocritical. I feel deceitful and paint things in a way different than they actually are because I don’t feel like using my brain to voice the words correctly.

Thanksgiving: Father thankyou for loving me. Thank you for your Holy Spirit who is my guide and my Comforter. Thank you Jesus for rescuing me and showing me how to walk. Thank you for your grace, your forgiveness, your justice, your mercy, your unending love, your forever plan of redemption and justification and salvation. Thank you for leading your people. Thank you for calling each of us by name. Thank you that you have given me a name. Thank you for giving me purpose.

Supplication: Father lead me. Lead us. Have mercy on your people. Thank you for your mercy, your grace. But thank you also for your justice. Lord, do whatever it takes to make us a people fit for your service. Prepare our hearts as good soil to receive your word. Help us apply it. Lord fan the flame in our hearts that burns for you. Lord grant your people a measure of faith so great that we would be yearning for you. Burning for you. Desiring You more than anything in the world. Lord I pray that we would think of you first in the morning. Lord I pray that we would turn to you first in times of thanksgiving and necessity. Father you are all-powerful and almighty and more than able to answer these prayers. Thank you that you hear our prayers and thank you that the prayers of a righteous man are effectual. I love you Lord. Thank you so much for using me for your glory. Bring glory to your name! In Jesus name, Amen.

I hope this was helpful brothers and sisters! The point is to start somewhere in your prayer life with God. Start praying more. Start talking to God more. Make time for God. What if you ceased for 5 minutes a day before God and talked or listened? I’ll do a post on listening soon. God bless you all… If you liked this post be sure to “like” it! xoxo!

<3 V

Listening to God

requires stopping the ongoing thought train in my own mind and being attentive to what God is saying to me. Sometimes stopping the train is difficult, but I have found ways to help me listen to Him speak.

Velvet. I have something to show you. Will you come and eat with me? Will you join me for a moment so I can share my heart with you.

If God is everywhere, how come it seems so hard to hear Him sometimes?

I think it’s because we’re not waiting in His presence for long enough.

It’s like working out. You can’t go to the gym for 2 minutes a day and expect the same results as someone who goes for 2 hours a day. Building up our faith muscles takes time and effort. Distinguishing between God’s voice and the enemy’s or our own is a skill to be honed. And it happens through time spent with God.

“Where can I go from Your Spirit?
         Or where can I flee from Your presence?

If I ascend to heaven, You are there;
         If I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there.

If I take the wings of the dawn,
         If I dwell in the remotest part of the sea,

Even there Your hand will lead me,
         And Your right hand will lay hold of me.”

Psalm 139:7-10

He is everywhere. When we are at home, He is there.

When we are at work, He is there.

At the grocery store, He is there.

At the gym, He is there.

Alone in the car, He is there.

At the beach, He is there.

In the dark, He is there.

And He is waiting to commune with us. We have the choice. To choose spending time with Him, or not. To choose hearing from Him, or not.

Lord, I thank you for your pursuit of me. I thank you for never giving up on me. I thank you for always sending me to the right places at the right times. I thank you for sending me the right people at the right times. I thank you for always taking care of me in the best way possible. Even with challenges and suffering. Thank you for making my ears attentive to you and for teaching me how to trust you. I wish I could trust you more easily. I wish I could believe your Word like I say I do. But I know that this will become easier the more time that I spend in your Word and in Your presence. Your word unto my ears and mind is like a fresh lens. The more I “put it on” and “put on Christ” and apply your teaching to my life, the more clearly I can see the design that you have for your people and for the world. Forgive me for always running ahead of you. Forgive me for choosing to focus on my problems and not trust you in this season. Forgive me for choosing to focus on what I DON’T have instead of all that I do. Thank you that you are my shepherd, and I lack nothing because of you <3

Listening to God. How could I not want to listen to Him!!! The Creator of the Universe… my goodness! The creator of all wants to commune with me. The God of everything is also the God of each person. My God. My Father. And He wants to commune with you too. He has a message for you. Will you carve out time today to listen to what He has to say? What is more important than communing with the One who knows you better than you know your self?

God Bless! <3