For years I had heard about praying scripture.
I knew why I should do it. I knew how beneficial it was, and how it could make your prayers more powerful. But I was always left wondering how do I actual pray scripture?
Not entirely understanding the practice left me with some misperceptions.
Mainly, I thought you had to memorize a bunch of verses and then they would just come to mind while praying. Memorizing scripture had never been a strength of mine, so I figured I would never be someone who prayed scripture.
Then I watched War Room (highly recommend!) and learned the secret; you write down scriptures and read them while praying!
It seemed so simple, but in the weeks following my War Room viewing I still felt stumped. I didn’t have a walk in closet I could clear out in order to post verses and prayers all over the walls. Even if I had a closet, I wasn’t sure what scriptures to use or how to weave them into a meaningful prayer.
So I set out to find a way to make praying scripture work for me.
What I came up with are a few simple tools for writing down verses and a basic formula to follow that has made praying scripture easy.
1. Have a prayer journal.
It doesn’t even have to be fancy, a blank notebook works great. In my journal I have collections of scripture for different types of prayers. For example, scriptures to pray for self-improvement (ways I want to grow in Christ), for my family, for when I feel anxious, etc.
These collections are built over time. As I am reading my devotional, or reading my Bible, I write down verses as I come across them. You can jump start your collections by doing topical searches in online Bible resources like biblegateway.com. I also used (and highly recommend) Priscilla Shirer’s book [affiliate link] Fervent: A Woman’s Battle Plan to Serious, Specific and Strategic Prayer which gives verses to pray for 10 different areas of your life.
2. Use note cards.
This is just another way to collect verses. At the top of each note card I write down when to use the verse; “When you don’t understand,” “When life feels crazy, ”When you grow tired and weary,” etc. I like note cards because they are small and I can put them anywhere. I’ve used them as bookmarks, thrown a couple in my planner, and set one up on my nightstand. Having them lying around reminds me to pray for what I need (I switch them around every week or so depending on what is going on in my life).
Make the verses personal.
a. If a verse is a command from God or guidance on how to live, I ask God to help me live in the way he desires.
Example: Galatians 5:16 “Walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh.”
My prayer: “Lord help me to walk by the spirit so that I will not carry out the desires of my flesh.”
b. If the verse is a promise from God, I claim the promise as my own.
Example: Jeremiah 29:12-13 “Call upon me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you search for me with all your heart.”
My prayer: “Heavenly Father, You promise that if I call, You will listen, and if I search for you with my whole heart, I will find you. I am calling so please listen, I am searching, so reveal yourself to me.”
c. If the verse expresses a need, I claim the need as my own.
Example: Psalm 61:2 “When my heart is overwhelmed; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”
My prayer: “Father my heart is overwhelmed, so lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”
That is it! Simple enough right? Will you give it a try?
My methods may not be a perfect fit for you, but I hope they give you a place to start.
If you already pray scripture regularly, I would love to know what tools and resources you find to be helpful.