What to Do when You Have Trouble Praying

Praying should be so simple, right? Yet some days we have trouble praying.

Do you pray the same prayers everyday or get bored when you pray or find your prayers overpowered by plans for the day and worries?

Girlfriend you are not alone.

The other morning as I prayed, the petitions rose beautifully. I felt the deep as I lifted up different people, individuals who I often fail to remember. It felt so good. I got up from my knees feeling rather spiritual. I’d partnered with the Divine.

But today…

As I closed my eyes my mind wandered to the worries in my head. There was not one thing spiritual about my thoughts the first few minutes of “prayer.”  As soon as I became aware of the invasion, I lassoed those non-prayers, threw them out, and proceeded to try to pray.

But I was stuck. Nothing wanted to come. Every prayer attempt seemed repetitious and empty. I tried to think of why this was happening. Did I do something wrong? I read my Bible last night before I went to bed. Why were my prayers this morning so empty? How could I focus them?

Use Scripture to Help You Focus Prayer

I threw out prayers of thanksgiving and praise, my normal petitions for family and friends, then I gave up and opened up my Bible.

(Cue Music of angel choir singing “Ahhhhh….”) I read:

Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise His holy name. Praise the Lord, O my soul and forget not all His benefits–who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagles” Psalm 103:1-5.

My soul quieted as my lips mouthed words of praise, and I was reminded of the times I’ve simply opened up my Bible and used the Psalms to be my prayer. God’s Word is eternal.

[bctt tweet=”Our prayers no longer threaten vanity or empty repetition but hold the weight of an inspired pen when we use Scripture to pray.” username=””]

The Spiritual Battle in Prayer

I sat for a moment with God. No words. Just waiting for direction. My eyes landed on a book I’m reading. I opened to find the author’s words warning of the spiritual battle on this earth. Her words were comforting as I read about the God of Angel Armies fighting for us. But her words also reminded me of the need to put on my armor everyday.

The enemy works to confuse and weaken our prayers.

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. Therefore, put on the full armor of God, so when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything to stand” Ephesians 6:12,13.

If you struggle praying, if focus is impossible, there is  very good chance the enemy is running interference. Put on your helmet. Tell him to go away in Jesus’ name.

Our prayers edit

Three steps to help us pray:

  • Pray Scripture or at least read your Bible before you jump into prayer.
  • Be aware of the spiritual battle. Put on the armor, Eph. 6:10-19. Speak the name of Jesus. The authority of His name weakens the enemy.
  • Write down your prayers/journal.

And remember, you are not alone. You’re not bad or less spiritual. You just need Divine help to pray, just like the rest of us.

What do you do to help you pray?

Digging Deep,



  1. sherri stewart

    Lovely words. Thanks

    1. Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment, Sherri!

  2. Mary Ann Metz

    Ahhhh – a great word, Andy! What book on spiritual warfare are you reading?

    1. This was a repackaged older post Mary Ann. It was probably Praying Gods Word by Beth Moore. :)

  3. Carol

    Me too, Ande. Thanks for opening your heart and reminding us that His words are eternal as we pray–no matter what.

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