Help me with prayer please

by TheListener 9 Replies latest jw friends

  • TheListener

    For those of you who still pray, regularly or not. I would ask some advice.

    As a dub when I would pray at meetings or for my family I had no problem finding many things to discuss with God. You know the usual things like my family, KH, GB, meetings, personal study, the friends around the world being persecuted, new system, meeting attendance again, field service, etc.

    Now that I'm fading I will not pray about the majority of those things any longer. My personal prayers have become so much more feeling and emotional. I really feel good after a nice prayer where I express my innermost feelings without fear of displeasing God.

    However, I need some help here. My family is still in. I pray with them as a family still and plan on continuing to do this. I need to liven up and deepen the meaning of my family prayers while at the same time not upsetting my family.

    Currently, I pray for things like individuals (everyone) who has been affected by natural disaster. I pray that people will come to know God and his goodness. I pray that people will read the Bible and benefit from its advice.

    Besides the "don't pray you dufus" ideas, is there any real suggestions for subjects that I can add?

  • Rooster

    I thank God for sending His son down to purchase us from the death we inherited from Adam thus becoming the life giving spirit the last Adam. I also thank Him that He even considers listing to us and that we have His son as our high priest now that we can approach Him through. I thank Him for allowing us to get the sense of His written word and for helping us make application of the things necessary to maintain our conduct fine as Christians should.

    I always ask for His protection and guidance and further protection against the wicked spirit forces. The scriptures said we would have a wrestling against the wicked spirit forces whether we realize it or not. I further thank Him for the food clothing and shelter that we enjoy I our day to day life.

    If my family members were still members of the sect I would quote scriptures in my prayers for their benefit. Scriptures that identify Christ as King in the first century and the fact that He did not wait until 1914 to receive His authority. Also other scriptures that help in realizing that individual today should only be identified as Christians and not use the name Jehovah’s Witnesses.

  • AlmostAtheist

    I think you'll eat a hole in your soul if you allow prayer to become a time to talk to your family, instead of praying with them. (I doubt you would do this anyway, but it's hard to avoid when you're consciously trying to avoid topics/steer toward topics while praying.) Be careful to stay sincere.

    If you're a Bible believer, thank him for his word, preserved through the ages for your benefit.

    Ask for wisdom in understanding it, humility in applying it, and tolerance toward those that don't.

    If you believe he created the universe, praise him for that. It's a nice universe, if he made it, he oughta get some credit.

    If you find yourself awestruck by his magnificence, say so. I remember feeling in awe when I thought about him and what he's done. It was fulfilling to articulate that to him.


  • aunthill

    I like to put on some Christian music and just worship God for a while before praying. Sometimes I will just sit and ask Him what does He have to say to me today (this is very hard - we have been trained all our lives to be proactive, so it takes practice to be able to sit and contemplate God without actively praying.) It also takes practice to learn to discern the voice of God. For me, most of the time He speaks to me in impressions in my spirit. Sometimes he gives me pictures and, on rare occasions, dreams. It works differently for different people.

    There is a small book called "Speak the Word Over Your Family for Salvation" by Harry & Cheryl Salem. It takes Scriptures and leaves blanks so that you can insert the name of the person(s) you are praying for into the Scripture. This is very effective as we are telling God that we understand His promise and we are looking to Him to fulfill these promises in the people we are praying for. It is published by Harrison House, Inc., P.O. Box 35035, Tulsa, OK 74153

    Hope this helps.

  • drew sagan
    drew sagan

    Everybody has made some good points. I especially like what dave said.

    Personally I have allways enjoyed reading the prayers of others as recorded in the Bible. THe deep feeling and motivation coming from men of faith (and lack of faith) can be a great guide to what prayer has been for people of the past and what it can be for you.

  • carla

    I know of a minister who said that when praying with jw's (when meeting and trying to do an intervention of sorts) he would still use the word Jehovah (that keeps them respectful) and then he would sometimes get a bit long winded and sneak in some scripts about Jesus, grace, and so on.

  • AuldSoul

    I can't improve on what Dave suggested. I can point up some benefits of his recommendation, though.

    (1) Such prayers would be impossible to discount as unspiritual.

    (2) Such prayers indicate a reliance on and appreciation for God that will not be lost on your family.

    (3) Such prayers would show the humility that you feel while also expressing the joy you have found, which is in sharp contrast to the prayers they will hear at other times, in other settings.


  • Narkissos


    I very much agree with Dave:

    I think you'll eat a hole in your soul if you allow prayer to become a time to talk to your family, instead of praying with them. (I doubt you would do this anyway, but it's hard to avoid when you're consciously trying to avoid topics/steer toward topics while praying.) Be careful to stay sincere.

    Nothing worse than a sermon disguised as prayer.

    From what I remember of my last few months among JWs, and the many opportunities I had later to pray with other Christians while not entirely sharing their dogmatics (often quite an understatement), focusing on the unknown proved to be refreshing and sometimes eye-opening, and still quite sincere on my part. It was really the best common ground I could think of. I mean addressing to God (or Jehovah, for that matter) as someone we do not entirely know, whom we cannot comprehend, whose thinking is definitely higher than ours, and whom we do not want to enclose in our relative, partial and provisional knowledge. Expressing your love for his mystery (even if you don't use that word). Humbly asking for wisdom as Dave put it. This is, in fact, reintroducing a genuine religious feeling (including reverence and awe) into prayer. Something which is painfully lacking in dogmatic prayer.

    As for the "revealed" part, insisting on the Johannine "definitions" of God as love, light or spirit, or his revelation in Jesus Christ (his "image"), may be a nice change from the usual JW speech.

    Also, as you said, mentioning your concern and appreciation for other people (which also includes their mystery) is an excellent idea.

  • TheListener

    I really appreciate everyone's reply to this thread.

    I agree with most of you that using prayer as a time to "preach" to my family is inappropriate. I also know that my wife would not allow me to pray with her if I did that anyway.

    I will mediate on everyone's suggestions and after I've implemented some of them I'll let you know how they went.

    Actually, I am very excited - I long for my family to know that although I'm deep in the fade process I love God and want to have a close relationship with him.

  • xjwms


    I wish I could add something. I have to admire you for really reaching out. You try so hard. You are a good person.

    I appreciate your last pm btw.

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