Prayer

Ways to Pray: 6 Heart Attitudes God Desires

Woman praying to God
Image credit: Deemerwha studio / Shutterstock.com

As believers in Christ, we have such freedom when it comes to different ways of praying! The Bible doesn’t prescribe a particular posture or place for prayer.

We can meet with the Lord on our knees behind a closed door or just as easily on the expressway as we drive to work.

With hands folded, or lifted high. Or, even as our hands are busy folding the laundry. Anywhere really, including the bathroom.

The Lord delights in the prayers of his people (Proverbs 15:8). It seems He just wants us to come to Him one way or another.

6 Ways to Pray

The Bible is very clear though that God is deeply concerned with what’s going on in our hearts as we pray. That’s the part that matters to Him. A lot.

This is why it’s so important for us to do a heart check regarding our prayer life from time to time. 

Based on the Scriptures, here are six heart attitudes God desires when we pray. I check myself on these regularly and pray you’ll find them to be a helpful reminder for you, too.

As you go through this list, ask the Holy Spirit to reveal to you any attitudes that He wants you to work on when it comes to prayer. Then, seek God’s help in growing more in whatever areas He might reveal to you.

1. CONFIDENTLY 

Do you come to God in prayer with your head hung low? As though you’re taking up too much of His time? Or do your concerns not really matter to Him all that much? Child of God, it’s time to stop this! Of course, if we’ve sinned, we need to confess so that we can be forgiven (1 John 1:9). Naturally, we need to show God reverence. Yet God also bids us to come before Him boldly because Jesus paid the price for our sins and we are His beloved children.

2. JESUS TEACHES US TO APPROACH THE FATHER REVERENTLY 

Jesus gave us the Lord’s Prayer as a model of how to pray and one of the first things it teaches us is to give God the honor He deserves. This means praising and thanking Him for who He is and all He’s done. It also means making His kingdom priorities our priorities in our conversations with Him.

3. SUBMISSIVELY 

While God desires us to bring our concerns and requests to Him, ultimately we need to recognize that the outcomes are about His will and not ours. Even Christ asked that, if possible, the cross be removed from Him, but He submitted to the Father on this matter and all others.

Here’s a wonderful article from crosswalk.com on Ways Prayer is Powerful Even When God Says “No”.

4. GOD WANTS US TO TALK WITH HIM HONESTLY

God gives us numerous models of His people engaged in gut-level honest conversations with Him. Hannah had a heart-to-heart with God about her inability to have children. Job spoke with God openly about his confusion and pain over his many losses. The Psalms overflow with lament. Even the Lord Jesus expressed a sense of abandonment and questioned the Father as He neared His last moments on the cross. We have no reason to think that God wants us to be anything but completely honest with Him in our prayers. Especially when we consider that He knows everything we truly think and feel.

5. JAMES INSTRUCTS US TO PRAY EXPECTANTLY

James is speaking specifically about asking God for wisdom as we face trials here. Yet God makes it abundantly clear in other parts of Scripture that we’re to approach Him with faith (Hebrews 11:6). If we ask for wisdom, we’re to believe that He grants it. And even when we don’t see the results we want when making other requests, God wants us to believe in His goodness, love and wisdom. To trust that He has our very best at heart and is working behind the scenes in ways we can’t see.

6. PERSISTENTLY

Jesus told the parable of the persistent friend to teach us to pray persistently. Do you give up easily when God doesn’t seem to answer your prayers? When God makes His will known about something, we’re to submit to it; otherwise, He encourages us to keep praying.

In conclusion, God answers every prayer. There’s no such thing as God doesn’t answer a prayer. So trust that every time you pray, God has heard you, and He has answered you. When you go to pray, don’t have doubt in your heart. Come into His courts with boldness, for He is your father.

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Susan is a mother of four beautiful babies and a born-again Christian. She took over Hope No Matter What in 2024 and enjoys sharing her knowledge of the goodness and faithfulness of God. Her passion is to bring hope and encouragement to others, and she prays that by sharing her knowledge and personal story, she can inspire others to find enlightenment in God's word.