Prayer Focus: How To Use Your Prayers To Change Your Circumstances

Give Your Prayers A Laser Focus

Do you have a prayer focus? If not, how do you measure the effectiveness of your prayers? Maybe this is an odd question, but thinking about it will help you. Prayer focus is so valuable because prayer is supposed to be one of the most important things in your life.

Prayer draws you closer to God. It helps you. Prayer also builds your relationship with Jesus Christ. I believe that prayer should arguably be the most powerful force in your life. In fact, if being a Christian were boiled down to it’s basic core priorities, prayer and reading the scriptures would be the key activities. You can’t have an strong relationship with God if you don’t talk to him.

So, prayer is important, but how do you measure its effectiveness in your life? Why wouldn’t you want to measure the effectiveness of something so vital as your prayers?

I have two suggestions for doing this:

1.) You measure the effectiveness of your prayer life by the answers you receive to prayer.

Now, this can be tough. There are moments when I’ve had prayers answered spot the on. Sometimes you get exactly what you pray for…verbatim. Other times, though, I’ve had difficulty seeing whether or not this is the answer or that is the answer.

if you couple this with the fact that sometimes God says “no,” you can see this method may not be the best way to gauge your prayer’s effectiveness. But the fact still remains, if God answers your prayer exactly as you prayed it, you have to conclude it was pretty effective.

2.) You measure the effectiveness of your prayers by what they produce in you.

Out of the two suggestions, I think this way of measuring is best.

Even if God says, “no” to your prayer, if your prayer made you trust God more, caused you to live with more peace, helped you to turn from some sin, or raised your faith level, It could be called an effective prayer. It did something powerful and positive in your life.

It is vitally important to have a strong prayer focus. Here’s why: The more specific you are with a few very important prayers, the more effective and powerful your prayers are likely to be.

We should all use prayer in at least three ways:

  1. Pray to know God.
  2. Pray to see change in your life.
  3. Pray to worship God.

But when it comes to requests, you should be specific. Be focused. Prayer focus helps you fight hard in prayer for what’s most important to you.

Two things will happen if you use prayer focus:

  1. You’ll know for sure if God says, “yes,” because it will be undeniable. Specific prayers produce undeniable answers.

  2. Your faith will always rise to the level of your fight.

Here’s what to do to have a prayer focus:

  • Maintain a short list of about five things you will work towards in prayer.
    • Maybe about something like being more generous, or cultivating a humble spirit…even something like showing more grace to others.
  • Create another short list of five things or less that are problems you’ll attack in prayer.
    • It could be the need for revival in your church.
    • Maybe you’ll pray for God to heal a loved one or yourself.
    • Maybe you need God to open a specific door for your job. You can pray about it specifically.
    • Maybe you need protection from the enemy in a certain area of life.

Practicing an ongoing prayer focus like this will help you to see when God has been faithful to say “yes”. It will also help you to focus on the few things that matter most to you. You can spend your time praying hard for the five biggest problems that prayer can solve.

Focusing your prayers is a little like shooting a rifle instead of a shotgun. The shotgun scatters and is effective, but the rifle is laser focused and puts all the power in one place. The rifle is more powerful.

Let your prayers be a rifle instead of a shotgun.

Faith Building Challenge

Sometimes we know we need a little push, but we can’t seem to do it on our own. My five-day faith building challenge is the little push you need to jump start your faith. In it, you will find easy, actionable, and strategic steps to help you build your faith. I would love the opportunity to help you along the way. To join the challenge, sign up below, and I’ll send you an email to get you started.

Larry Shankle is a pastor, author, and blogger. He helps people get clarity and direction in their calling, purpose, dreams, and leadership.

Larry and his wife (Amanda) live in the Arkansas river valley with their two boys (Braxton and Dawson). He has spent almost two decades in active local church ministry serving in multiple leadership roles. Larry has spent the last six and a half years serving as Lead Pastor of GrandviewChurch in Natural Dam, AR.

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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