How to Pray

Adoration & Proclamation Prayer

One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, 'Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples'.

Luke 11: 1 Lord Teach us to Pray

The Disciples Request

In Luke 11:1-4, the Disciples asked Jesus to teach them to how to pray. In group situations, it can be a little scary to pray out loud. But what about when you are alone? Do you still find it challenging to know how to pray?

“One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When He finished, one of His disciples said to Him, “Lord teach us to pray, just as John taught His disciples.”
He said to them, “When you pray, say:
“Father, hallowed be Your Name, Your kingdom come. Give us this day our daily bread. Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us. And lead us not into temptation.”

Jesus Himself chose to begin His prayer with adoration of the Father. He chose to address His prayer to an approachable Father, acknowledging who HE was and appealing to the glory of HIS Name. God has many Names in the Bible which reveal what HE did and how HE loved His people. When we need to see God as a healer we declare His nature as Healer by His Name Jehovah Rapha. When we need to see God as our provider we declare His nature as Our Provider by His Name Jehovah Jireh. This prayer focuses on the character attributes of God by using the Names He Himself revealed to us in His Word.

ACTS Prayer Model

According to an article from Billy Graham’s website, this is a good model to follow.

The ACTS model will be helpful to you as you learn how to pray. ACTS stands for Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, and Supplication.

• Adoration means worship. We encourage you to begin your time of prayer by adoring and praising God. Praise Him for who He is and for all that He has done for you. God delights in your praises!

• Confession, the next component, means agreeing with God about the things that you have done wrong. It’s a time to express sorrow about what you have said, thought, or done that is not pleasing to Him. Ask God to forgive you for these things, and then believe that He does so freely. When you confess your sins, you receive God’s cleansing and this helps to remove any barrier in your communication with Him (read 1 John 1:9).

• Thanksgiving basically means being thankful to God. Thank Him for His love, protection, and provision just to name a few things.

• Supplication is the final component, and this means praying for your needs and for the needs of others, such as friends, family, your pastor, missionaries, government leaders, and persecuted Christians around the world. You may want to pray for such things as God’s guidance, wisdom, and opportunities to serve.

Keep in mind that the ACTS model serves as a guide to help you, not a rigid formula to follow. There is no “canned” approach that you need to take; just talk from your heart. There are additional steps that will help. Set aside a specific time to pray each day.

Pick a quiet place where you can be alone with God. You will also find a special blessing if you begin your time by reading the Bible. Select a passage to read (download a Bible reading plan) and spend some time thinking about it deeply. Reflect on what God is impressing on your heart to you through the passage.

Ask God to help you apply what you are learning. God wants you to share your heart with Him, and He wants to share His heart with you—this can take place anytime, day or night!