What To Pray
When keeping a prayer journal you should pray whatever comes to mind, but here are some guidelines:
Prayers of thanks
Prayers of thanks can give you a more grateful spirit as you reflect on your blessings. Even when things seem their bleakest you have much to be grateful for. Thank God for bringing you through a new day. Thank Him for providing you with food and shelter and other material blessings. Thank Him for the talents He has given you. If you ever feel that you don’t have talents, rest assured that you DO. Ask God to reveal those to you as well as ways you can use your talents to help yourself and others. Thank Him for the people He has sent into your life – friends, immediate and extended family, helpful coworkers and friendly neighbors as well as others who have had a brief but meaningful impact: the stranger who gave up his seat for you on the train, the grocery clerk who loaded your purchases in your car, the thoughtful driver who let you in front of him in traffic.
Concerns of others
Pray for concerns of others: a friend who is going through a difficult time; a family member who is ill; or a child who is struggling with school. Pray for people you don’t even know: the children who wait at the school bus stop on the corner each morning, the woman who walks her dog past your house each evening, the salesman who tried to sell you new windows and gutters. Know that whatever you are going through there are others who have troubles that may not be apparent to you. Praying for others can help you make an impact on other people’s lives and helps take your focus off yourself and your problems.
Pray for issues that are worrying you: an upcoming procedure or test result or a new symptom you don’t understand; pray for patience and strength; pray for peace and calmness; pray for healing.
Wants and Needs
Think about your hopes, desires and needs. Do you need a job with less physical or emotional stress? Do you desire to have more understanding and help from your family? Do you just hope to get though one day without pain? Let God know and write down your prayer.
Keeping a prayer journal has benefits that extend well beyond the time you are actually writing and praying. The results of prayer can last indefinitely. Writing them down allows you to go back at a later date to remember your prayer and see the remarkable ways in which they were answered.