6 Ways to Pray Correctly

By Vladimir Savchuk | June 3, 2024 | 5 mins

6 Ways to Pray Correctly

Did you know that not all prayers are created equal?

In fact, there are prayers that will bring you closer to God and there are prayers that God condemns. In Scripture, there are two kinds of prayers that Jesus condemns and one kind that Jesus accepts and invites.

3 Types of Prayers

1. The Prayer of a Heathen

The first kind of prayer that Jesus rejects is the prayer of a heathen. They believe that if you pray for a very long time and use many repetitions, they’ll get God’s attention.

Now, there’s nothing wrong with praying long prayers. In the Bible we see that Jesus spent all night in prayer. We see other people in the Bible praying long prayers, and we see Jesus repeating His prayer three times, “Father, if it is possible, may this cup pass me by.” Paul also prayed three times asking God to remove the thorn in his flesh. But this is different. The heathens are people who don’t operate from a place of relationship but rather from a place of vain repetitions, thinking that if they pray long enough, God will be forced to answer.

2. The Prayer of the Hypocrite

The second prayer that Jesus rejects is the prayer of a hypocrite.

Hypocrites love to use prayer as a means to get attention. They’re not trying to get God’s attention; they’re just trying to get the attention of other people. Jesus tells us to not be like them. Hypocrites are religious people who know the rules and something about prayer, but their heart is not in the right place when they come before the Lord. These were the Pharisees. They prayed with the goal of getting as much attention as possible.

3. The Prayer of an Heir

The third type of prayer, and this is the right type of prayer, is what I call the prayer of an heir or the prayer of God’s child. This is the prayer that I want to break down in the following six steps based on Matthew 6:6.

6 Tips to Pray Correctly

1. The Priority of Prayer

Jesus gives us an example of what it’s like to pray correctly as a child of God. First, I want to point out that He says, “When you pray.” Meaning, He expects us to pray. It’s not an option for a Christian to pray. It’s also not an obligation but an opportunity when God invites us into His presence.

2. The Place of Prayer

The second principle of the proper way of praying is the place. He says, “Go into your room.” We know Jesus prayed in the wilderness, and great men of God prayed in mountains and had altars. But in this passage, Jesus makes it simple and practical for each of us, telling us to just find a place to be with Him–our room, closet, car, etc.

3. The Privacy of Prayer

The third principle of this prayer is privacy. He says, “Shut your door.” In other words, don’t go into prayer with the intention to be “seen” or to become “known.” Don’t post your prayer.

There’s nothing wrong with sometimes live streaming or praying publicly, but if your motive is always for others to see your spirituality, you’ll lose the benefits of what prayer is supposed to be. May the fact that you’re praying be revealed by God in His time, rather than by your own efforts.

4. The Practice of Prayer

Fourth, He says, “Pray.” In other words, verbalize what is stirring in your heart. Don’t just think your prayer, but use your words to address God. There are many prayers we can say like the Lord’s Prayer, the Jabez prayer, the prayer of the tabernacle, spiritual warfare prayers, and the Lord’s redemptive names. We could also give thanks, confess our sins, bring our petitions before Him and take time to pray for others.

5. The Person of Prayer

Next is to have the understanding of who our prayer is directed to. Prayer is not about the act; it’s about the Father. Many people get stressed about prayer because they think about prayer more than they think about the Father. Jesus gave us a model for prayer, but He emphasizes Whom we are addressing.

6. The Promise of Prayer

Lastly, if we pray in the way Jesus described, the Bible says it briths about His reward, openly. Jesus will bless you while you’re praying and reward you publicly. This can manifest in blessings on your business, relationships, ministry, finances, and health. The Lord rewards those who pray privately by blessing them publicly. If you try to use prayer for public attention, like hypocrites, or pray long without a relationship with the Father, like heathens, you won’t receive anything.

I encourage you to think about God when you’re praying, and He promises to reward you. God loves when His children call on Him.

Read: How to Pray

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