Pray for faith and a purposeful pursuit of God that will transform your spiritual walk.
This time of year, there is no shortage of New Year’s resolution ideas. From health and wellness goals to professional and educational aspirations, we have optimistic visions of the year to come.
Did you know that six months after setting the goal, only 4% of people are still keeping their New Year’s Eve resolutions? That’s a 96% failure rate!
Here’s why: unrealistic goals.
What sounds great on December 31 doesn’t feel so great in January, and definitely not by February. Why does the motivation from January not translate into real life?
When it comes to my spiritual walk, I have found what keeps me motivated day in and day out, for decades on end. No practice has impacted my faith more than spending time with God.
It’s not a glamorous resolution that will earn me a new outfit or a raise, but it has returned the biggest dividend in my life. These prayers for faith and grace have been instrumental in experiencing God and inspiring spiritual growth.
To pass along the tricks I’ve used to cement this habit into my life, I’ve broken it down into five simple prayers that reflect powerful principles I’d like to share with you.
If you’d like to quickly jump to each prayer, use the links below.
- Pray About Priorities
- Pray for Transformation
- Pray About Taking Responsibility
- Pray for Faith & Clarity
- Pray for Inertia
5 Simple Prayers That Will Deepen Your Faith This Year
1. Pray About Priorities
“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you.” (Matthew 6:33)
No guts, no glory. This holds true for civilians as well as the military.
When it comes to praying for faith and cultivating a mature spiritual walk, the most powerful exercise has been getting up early to spend time with God. It was a discipline that happened over time, starting with a few minutes a couple of times a week to — decades later — becoming an incremental part of my day.
It sounds simple but it completely revolutionized my life. Similar to physical activity, which is usually likened to torture in the beginning, getting up early as a college student was a painful experience. But soon I appreciated starting my day like that — allowing the grace of God to pour into my life.
PRAY FOR FAITH IN HUMILITY
Eventually, I was able to say:
“Since You are all knowing and all powerful and I am Your child and You love me and You know every person, every event, every circumstance that’s going to come into my life, I think I’ll talk to You about this day before I go running around in the world.”
Actually, it’s very arrogant to do otherwise.
And for the record — yes, I would love to sleep in. It’s not physically easier for me than it is for anyone else but knowing that I am headed to the throne where I receive grace and mercy is all the motivation I need. In fact, in my YouTube sermon series, Authentic, you can hear exactly how I made this a lifestyle (with the help of an alarm clock!).
Let’s pray: God, give me strength to be content as I focus and seek first after You. As I follow Your ways and not my own, help me trust that You are in control.
2022 Prayer for Balanced Priorities: God, give me strength to be content as I focus and seek first after You. As I follow Your ways and not my own, help me trust that You are in control. Click To Tweet
2. Pray for Transformation
“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” (Romans 12:2)
This is the perfect time of year to take inventory of what we fill ourselves with — and I’m not talking about food.
Every day, the most important decision you will make is what you ALLOW into your mind.
“Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” (Philippians 4:8)
This is your opportunity to make some hard decisions: does Netflix need to go? Is it time for a filter on your laptop or a blocker on your phone? Are the romance novels you’re reading causing you to resent your partner?
It’s time to take out the trash. We will be people who have pure minds so that our lives will demonstrate God’s will.
Let’s pray: God, help me to remove the trash from my life. Give me courage and humility and grant me a heart that hates evil but loves good.
3. Pray About Taking Responsibility
“He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much.” (Luke 16:10)
When I was in college, a mentor and I stopped to use the bathroom at a gas station. I was shocked to notice him wiping down the toilet and the sink after he used them. Someone was paid to do that job!
He kindly reminded me that being a disciple of Christ meant leaving every situation better than I found it. This was a way of taking responsibility and being faithful in the little things.
What are the “little things” in your life?
- Do you take care of the basics, like picking up after yourself?
- Are you being a good steward of your time? Or do you waste it and then operate in panic mode?
- What about behind closed doors — are you living with integrity when nobody is watching?
As you can see, the “little things” are actually quite big and incredibly formative to your walk with God.
Not to mention, when you honor God in the small areas, you are demonstrating faith that you believe He’s preparing you and you will wait on Him for the big things. In a Christianity.com article, the author suggested a meaningful prayer for faith, asking God to “fill our souls with devotion to your service, and strength against all temptation.” Similarly, we should pray to be devoted to His service, for His sake.
Let’s pray: Lord, open my eyes to see where I’m overlooking my responsibilities. Give me joy as I obey you and act faithfully in the “little things” you’ve entrusted me with.
2022 Prayer for Responsibility: Lord, open my eyes to see where I’m overlooking my responsibilities. Give me joy as I obey you and act faithfully in the “little things” you’ve entrusted me with. Click To Tweet
4. Pray for Faith & Clarity
“A plan in the heart of a man is like deep water, but a man of understanding draws it out.” (Proverbs 20:5)
There are some tangible tools that have helped me cultivate a transformed life. I hope you’ll try a couple and find them to be helpful like I have.
FOUR HELPFUL ASSETS FOR SPIRITUAL CLARITY
- Index cards (3×5) are incredible tools for remembering clear-cut objectives.
- Calendars provide freedom within structure. Once you plan for the most important and pressing events, you gain clarity on how to schedule the rest of your time.
- Classic “to-do” lists help me to focus. Try coming up with a way to qualify each task, noting what’s negotiable and what’s not.
- Journaling has given me a precious record of thoughts, prayers, and growth over the course of my life. I encourage you to try this exercise and not worry about the look or structure of it. Just start writing honestly and let the rest take care of itself.
Let’s pray: You are a God of order and I ask that you also help me approach my faith with purpose — for Your glory. Give me clarity as I seek You and steward well the time and resources you’ve provided.
2022 Prayer for Clarity: You are a God of order and I ask that you also help me approach my faith with purpose -- for Your glory. Give me clarity to steward well the time and resources you’ve provided. Click To Tweet
5. Pray for Inertia
“I passed by the field of the sluggard, and by the vineyard of the man lacking sense; And behold, it was completely overgrown with thistles, its surface was covered with nettle, and its stone wall was broken down. When I saw, I reflected upon it; I looked, and received instruction. ‘A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest,’ Then your poverty will come as a robber, and your want like an armed man.” (Proverbs 24:30-34)
Most people are filled with good intentions, but unfortunately have long records of broken promises to themselves and to others.
We break promises and tell ourselves we don’t have time but for most of us, that’s just not true. Lack of time is not the obstacle; it’s how we choose to use it.
Once you get moving in positive directions, things happen. It’s getting there that’s hard! Most of us spend our lives saying, “When things calm down, and when this season is over, then I’ll really ….” Instead, do it now.
Need to pay a bill? Do it now.
Have a broken relationship that needs repairing? Do it now.
Need to take care of unfinished personal business? Do it now.
Feel a push to give generously to someone? Do it now.
As we all know, those times never come. Because even if the world is shut down and we seem to have more time, we’re asked to homeschool our children while we learn to work remotely from home. Having more time is a fantasy and often, an excuse to procrastinate!
We have to stop imagining “when” and instead, DO IT NOW.
Let’s pray: Lord, reveal to me ways that I might be a sluggard. Am I procrastinating? Am I waiting until a better time to spend time with You and make time to love what You love? Show me and teach me how to love Your ways.
I hope that you will speak these prayers of faith and grace in your life and choose to do that hard but rewarding work of prioritizing your communion with God. What’s awaiting is a transformed life that starts every day by seeking God and letting Him set your priorities.
What are you waiting for?
Need a starting point for regular times with God? This 17-day journey exploring Romans 12 will help you develop the habit of being in God’s Word every day. Sign up for free and start today.
Learn more about living an upright, transformed life when you explore the 5 principles from the Scriptures in a recent YouTube sermon series entitled Authentic.
Founder & Teaching Pastor, Living on the Edge
Chip Ingram is the CEO and teaching pastor of Living on the Edge, an international teaching and discipleship ministry. A pastor for over thirty years, Chip has a unique ability to communicate truth and challenge people to live out their faith. He is the author of many books, including The Real God, Culture Shock and The Real Heaven. Chip and his wife, Theresa, have four grown children and twelve grandchildren and live in California.More Articles by Chip