Reminder: : Yesterday we placed behind us every failed attempt to pray and decided to reach for the prayer life God is calling us to. One more time, with all your heart, reach forward.
Distractions. They’re probably the most universal hindrance to prayer. When we decide to pray, it seems like everything in creation collaborates to pull our attention in other directions.
You’re in a war for your prayer life. I urge you, therefore, to demonize distractions. Decide right now that anything seeking to draw your attention away from prayer is your enemy. Declare war. Mobilize an offensive against every distraction.
On Day 1, we quoted Psalm 27:4 where David said he desired to seek just one thing—to dwell in the Lord’s presence all his days. But I want to point out that the verses that precede and follow it mention warfare. Here’s the verses that follow Psalm 27:4.
For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion; in the secret place of His tabernacle He shall hide me; He shall set me high upon a rock. And now my head shall be lifted up above my enemies all around me. (Psa 24:5-6)
Warfare surrounds prayer because the place of prayer will always be contested. You have an enemy who doesn’t want you praying.
PRAY. Ask God for a warring, militant spirit—for mettle in your soul. Receive grace to resist and overcome anything that hinders your prayer life.
This is war. Ask for strength to fight.
And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit. (Eph 6:17-18)
Okay, let’s go after this thing. When Paul spoke of the believer’s warfare in Ephesians 6, he urged us to put on the whole armor of God so we can stand against the wiles of the devil. He told us to clothe ourselves with truth, righteousness, the preparation of the gospel of peace, and the shield of faith. Then he closed the passage with this exhortation:
The purpose of getting clothed with the armor of God, according to Paul, is that we might pray. Prayer assumes there will be a fight. To overcome in prayer, we must first get dressed for the battle.
Jesus spoke of our fight with the devil in this manner:
“Those by the wayside are the ones who hear; then the devil comes and takes away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.” (Luke 8:12)
Jesus has called us to pray, but the devil tries to use distractions to steal our prayer life from us. And the cares of life try to choke it (see Luke 8:14).
What things distract you from praying? Maybe it’s things like the computer, phone, chores, a busy schedule, social media, TV, etc. Take a moment and write down the main things that distract your prayer time.
PRAY. Ask God for a specific strategy to combat these distractions.
Once God gives you the strategy, write it down below. Be real practical.
How I will fight each distraction, by God’s grace: Personally, one of my big distractions during prayer is that I often think of a new task I need to do. Then my head starts obsessing about that task. Here’s how I’ve learned to war against that distraction: I take a notepad and pen to my secret place. When I think of a task I need to do, I write it down. Now I know I won’t forget to do it. That assurance helps me push aside the distracting thoughts and return to prayer.
PRAY. Use the rest of your time to talk to the Lord about the distractions that derail you most. This is war! Ask the Holy Spirit to help you fight fiercely for a faithful prayer life.
By God’s grace we overcome. Rejoice in the Lord!
RESET: 20 Ways to a Consistent Prayer Life Copyright © 2018 by Bob Sorge Published by Oasis House
Reproduced with permission.
For information on all Bob’s books, go to www.oasishouse.com