“ So is my word that goes from my mouth; it will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. “ Isaiah 55:11
As I teacher, I have learned that consistency is key to my success in the classroom. I must follow through on the consequences and rewards that I tell my students. If I don't, my students can't trust me. They can't rely or depend on the things that I say. I am so thankful that this is not something I have to worry about with God. He is so faithful, so honorable, so consistent. Whatever he says he will do, he does it. Every word that he speaks comes to pass. He is reliable. This is extremely important to remember when praying scripture. In Isaiah 55, God says that his word will not return to him void. That literally means that when you pray his words back to him something has to happen. It will of course all be in his timing, but you are guaranteed to see fruit from these prayers. In this series, I want to challenge you to take your prayer life to the next level and begin to pray scripture. Let God's word become your words.
Find Scriptures that Speak to your Circumstance
The first step to praying scriptures is to find them! Finding the scriptures is quite easy. You can read the Bible, ask a godly friend or pastor, or search the internet. What did people do before the internet? I can’t even imagine! You can use any search engine to find scriptures for prayer. I recommend typing in “scriptures for warfare”, “scriptures to pray”, or “scriptures for (Healing, strength etc)”. These will pull up an ample amount of scriptures that you can use in your prayer time. If you find more than you need at the moment (as I’m sure you will ) you can bookmark them or copy and paste them into a doc/email for later use.
Another good resource is a friend or spiritual leader in your life. Have your friend look up one topic and you look up a different topic. Then, swap verses. A different method is to look up the same topic and see if you have any different verses between the two of you. You can also go talk to a spiritual leader. They are full of wisdom and know many scriptures that will be applicable. I recommend bringing a paper and pen or taking notes on your smartphone. Be sure to be a good steward of their time and think of specific questions to ask beforehand. Some great questions to ask are: What are good scriptures for (circumstance)? How have you used scripture in prayer? Turn your phone on silent and focus your mind on listening to all of their wisdom!
Finally, Read the Bible. This is the most obvious answer. When I find a scripture that I think I should use in my prayer life, I will highlight it and go back to my usual Bible study. In my bible, I have a system of highlighting my scriptures to pray in purple and my Thanksgiving/Praise scriptures in Pink. I highly recommend this. You can further divide your scriptures as well. For example, Purple- spiritual welfare, green-healing, yellow-praise, blue- spouse.
Begin to search the word and compile scriptures that you can use in your prayer life. Start off by choosing just one category to focus on such as , praise & thanksgiving. Each week rotate topics, and you will have a good scripture foundation in no time.
Make the Scripture Personal
You should make the scripture personal to you by inserting your name and circumstance into your prayer. Here are a few examples.
“Submit yourselves, then to God. Resist the devil, and he will come near to you.” James 4:7
"God, according to your word, help me submit to you. Help me to resist the devil and come near to me. In Jesus' Name, Amen."
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, i will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” Isaiah 43:1-2
"God, according to your word, help me to not fear. For you have redeemed me. You have summoned me by name; I am yours. When I pass through the waters you will be with me; and when I pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over me. When I walk through the fire, I will not be burned; the flames will not set me ablaze. In Jesus' Name, Amen."
When you personalize the scripture, you are putting yourself in a place to receive the blessing. It makes your prayer more specific. If it is a scripture where God is speaking, change the I’s to you’s, and the you’s to I’s. If it is a scripture where someone else is speaking, and you don’t need to change the words, just make sure your mind and heart are focused on God as you pray the scripture. Many of the Psalms are a good example of this.
“Hasten, O God, to save me; Oh Lord, come quickly to help me. May those who seek my life be put to shame and confusion; may all who desire my ruin be turned back in disgrace.” Psalm 79:1-2
In this verse, you don’t have to personalize the words. Instead the heart behind the scripture is what becomes personalized. You have to speak the scripture as if you believe God will be true to his word.
MAKE A SCRIPTURE PRAYER JOURNAL
The prayer journal I am speaking of here is more of a scripture record. This book will be full of ready made personalized scriptures. You can think of it as your war journal. There are two different types of journals that I recommend. The first is for your home. This can be one compartmentalized journal, or different journals. The most important thing is to have a way to divide into topics. So you can have one section or journal for healing, strength, depression, etc. You will use the structure mentioned above for each prayer. Each page will contain a different scripture already written for you to read in your prayer time.
The second kind of journal is a mini scripture prayer journal. This should be a small, thinnish ( is that a word? lol) journal that can fit easily into your regular bag. This is great for on the go praying. You may encounter a person who you need to pray for on the spot, or when you get in your car. This will allow you to have a “mini journal” to pull from. We all get those mass emergency prayer texts because someone has been in an accident, etc. In those situations, you can just pull out your journal and pray God’s own promises back to him. This doesn’t have to be divided because it should be something small. However, if you still want to have some sort of division, you can get little sticky notes and use them in between each section.
I hope you feel a lot more equipped to add scripture to your prayer life. A great way to start is just to keep 2 scripture prayers near where you get dressed or in the bathroom to just get in the habit of praying scripture. Just start small. Maybe each night write one scripture prayer down and pray it. Soon you will have many recorded and memorized to use at anytime!
"Oh God, my king, We are so grateful hat you have given us your precious word to guard our lives. Help us to experience the power of praying scripture when we come before you. Lead us to the verses we need to pray. Let the holy spirit help us as we incorporate scripture more into our prayer life. We are so thankful for this gift. Help us to not take it for granted." In Jesus' Name, AMEN