Embrace the Awkwardness

man-praying[1]In some cultures, those who talk audibly to themselves are considered insane. From the outside looking in, any of us might question the sanity of someone who is carrying on one side of a two-way conversation with no one physically there on the receiving end.

Despite the feelings of uncomfortable clumsiness that can come, the process of prayer is perhaps THE most critical aspect of our walk. Over the next few posts, we’ll discuss some of the hurdles that I have faced in my prayer life and some ways to overcome them.

This year, I participated in an experience that forced me to embrace the awkwardness of my prayer life.

A group of men in my church are participating in a study called “The Journey” by an organization called Influencers. You can find a link to their website here. This study is a tremendous way to grow from a foundation of belief to an abundant, active relationship with Christ.

In the spring, we went into the wilderness as a group on a Saturday morning. With each man finding his own place of solitude (and longhorn cattle…more on this in a future post), we each entered into a 90 minute conversation with our Creator.

I walked into the woods that day confident that I would have about 85 minutes to kill after a “long” five minute prayer. As I began to pray, the awkwardness began to fade. The longer I spoke, the easier and deeper the conversation became!

By the end of the 90 minutes, I was nowhere near finished…for the first time in my life, I experienced prayer that became a true two way conversation. I wanted more!

Some of the lessons learned in this process and in a book I recently read have changed the way I pray.

I have distilled these learnings into the following key points.

1. Pray to the RIGHT GOD.

2. Pray BIG.

3. Pray SPECIFIC.

4. Manage your Pray : ”Pray for You” RATIO.

5.  Have a WALKING PRAYER.

We’ll breakout and discuss each of these topics together in coming posts. Just click on the words in BOLD above to navigate directly to each respective post.  As we talk, I’m praying for your comments. Let’s engage in a true conversation and see what we can learn from each other!

What stories do you have about times when prayer changed your life?

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

  • Jennifer H.

    I’m SO looking forward to these upcoming posts! Sometimes it’s hard to sit down and just talk to God – and not try to multi-task. But it’s crucial to do it. That’s something I’ve been trying to work on this past week and I can’t wait to hear your thoughts.

    • freec78

      Awesome, Jen! I’m right there with you.

      Mark has some interesting insight in his comment that may help us both! I’m still looking for wasy to speed up the process of eliminating the “noise” and becoming truly quiet and ready to HEAR His voice. As we walk through the next few posts, jump in with any ideas you have or anything you’ve found benefit in.

      The good news is that, starting today I’m moving to three posts/week on Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I’m excited see what God does in this series of posts!

  • This is a wonderful post. My most influential prayer times come after a time of intense worship. I figure I have to give God what He wants before I start asking for what I want. This also ensures that I what I want lines up with what God wants.

    • freec78

      Good insight, Mark!

      Even on my “wilderness” prayer experience, it took five-ten minutes to get my mind settled in and focused. This is when the two-way conversation began…before that it was all me reciting my wish list. It was also during that focused period that my adoration and awe of who He is became authentic and intense. The scariest part for me was that I had never been in that place before. ALL of my previous prayers had resided in that place where distractions and misdirection kept my conversation shallow and one sided.

      Do you feel like prayer immediately following worship helps you get to focused, connected conversation faster?

  • Andrew

    You subscribe plugin is not working – it won’t even respond when I hit “subscribe” after typing my email. Just FYI.