Most times when I share my personal experiences with God or tell of how beautiful it is to hear the Father speak, I get messages from persons asking how they can experience the same. Some responses from readers of my book – Letters To Abba -include questions about how to be as intimate and open with God as I portrayed in my letters to Abba and in His responses to me. Just recently, someone asked to know how to make prayer times count. She said she’d like to pray but each time she tries, it ends up empty. The void discourages her and no matter how hard she tries to reach God, He doesn’t seem to be there. If you have a similar experience, or find that you don’t enjoy prayer in the real sense of the word, I wrote this post for you, to help you cultivate a meaningful prayer life and find an authentic connection with God.
Prayer is a powerful and transformative experience that allows us to connect with the divine and experience the presence of God in our lives. However, cultivating a meaningful prayer life goes beyond mere repetition or ritual. It involves developing an authentic and personal connection with God. Some key truths I’d like to remind your heart of are Jesus’ words and John 4:24; A relationship with God Is strictly a Faith-affair; How Jesus connected with the Father at the raising up of Lazarus; and what prayer means as seen in Adam’s relationship with God.
Jesus’ words in John 4:24
God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.
This truth about God should seat foremost in our hearts as we seek to build a relationship with Him that is true. Firstly, God desires this intimacy with you, even more than you do. (…for such the Father seeks – vs 23). Secondly, He is spirit. Speaking with God is not like speaking with your best friend, in some ways it is, but it is very different in that you can’t see Him. You can feel Him, and neither can you hear Him with your physical ears. You can only connect with Him in your spirit. How? We’ll get to that. Just have it cleared that the absence of goosebumps and physical signs does not invalidate your authentic connection with the Father. And this takes us to the next vital truth.
Relationship with God Is strictly a Faith-affair
If you were Jesus, after your resurrection from the dead, who would you appear to first? The people who already believed what you said about yourself or the ones who doubted you? I would appear to the doubters and show them that they were wrong. But guess what Jesus did? He appeared only to those who already believed. Demonstrating to us that Hebrews 11:1 is true, that God is pleased by our faith, that truly the just lives by faith, and that a relationship with God can only thrive by faith. The Father is pleased when we take Him at His word. When we do not rely on physical evidence to know if He is with us or not. He is thrilled when we know that He is with us even when we don’t feel like it. It takes faith to exalt truth above our feelings, and it delights the Father’s heart when we do.
How Jesus connected with the Father at the raising up of Lazarus
There was no loud voice, no shaking of the earth, and no thunder when Jesus simply raised His voice and said “Father, I thank you that you have heard me. I knew that you always hear me, but I said this for the benefit of the people standing here, that they may believe that you sent me.“ and almost immediately, without pausing to check, to feel angels around or any other physical signs, He raised His voice and called the dead man to come forth (John 11:41-43). Jesus connected with the Father by trusting that the Father hears Him. Strictly by faith, no feelings involved.
What prayer means as seen in Adam’s relationship with God.
Before there was a need to make requests, before there were demons to bind and family members to intercede for, Adam and Eve prayed. So prayer is beyond a list of requests or a means to accumulate power. We don’t pray just to evade the devil’s attacks, and if you make prayer all about the enemy, you’d find yourself more conscious of the devil’s abilities than of God’s Presence with you. You probably already know that prayer brings an intimate connection with God, that is why you’re reading this. So let’s dive in!
What to do when You’re not connecting with God.
1. Stir yourself up
If you are baptized in the Holy Spirit, speaking in tongues is your spiritual native language. It is a gift from God that is available to you at all times, not limited to specific services or dependent on particular feelings. The ability to speak in tongues is a powerful tool for prayer, worship, and spiritual edification.
1 Corinthians 14:2 (NIV): “For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to people but to God. Indeed, no one understands them; they utter mysteries by the Spirit.”
This verse highlights the significance of speaking in tongues as a form of communication between us and God. When we speak in tongues, we are not speaking to people but directly to God. It is a spiritual language that allows us to express ourselves and communicate with God on a deeper level. Additionally, verse 4 of the same chapter encourages individuals who speak in tongues to pray for interpretation, demonstrating the value of this gift in personal prayer and intercession.
I’ve found that when I pray in tongues, it stirs my spirit and enables me to concentrate on God such that when I begin to pray in English, my focus is fixed on the Father.
2. Authentic Communication
Psalm 62:8 (NIV): “Trust in him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.”
This verse reminds us to trust in God and pour out our hearts to Him. It encourages us to be open and honest in our communication with God, sharing our deepest thoughts, concerns, and desires. By doing so, we acknowledge that God is our refuge, a safe and loving presence who listens to us and cares for us.
This verse emphasizes the significance of authentic communication with God, demonstrating that pouring out our hearts to Him leads to a deeper connection and a sense of refuge in His presence. When we approach God with vulnerability and transparency, we invite Him into the depths of our being and create space for authentic intimacy and understanding.
3. Listen for His voice
Prayer is communication and for this to be true in the sense of the word, both parties must speak. God’s primary means of speaking to us is His word. The Bible is a love letter from the Father to us. Sometimes when you don’t feel connected to Him, read His word. Remins your heart that John 15 is true. That you are connected to Him whether your feelings agree or not. Read the words of Jesus, and the letters of Paul, and pray the Psalm of David. Personalize the promises in Isaiah, accept the wisdom in Proverbs, and through it all, as you read His word know beyond a doubt that this is God speaking to you in this moment. That is faith. and it thrills the Father’s heart!
Follow the promptings in your heart. Relax and let His word come alive in your heart, and that brings me to the next point:
4. Seek God’s Presence Beyond Words:
Prayer doesn’t always have to be about speaking. Sometimes, connecting with God is best achieved through silence, contemplation, or meditation. Embrace different forms of prayer, such as sitting in His presence, reflecting on Scripture, or allowing your mind to be still. In these moments, you can experience a profound connection with God beyond the limitations of language.
Psalm 46:10 (NIV): “He says, ‘Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.'”
In moments of silence, contemplation, and meditation, we can encounter the presence of God in a profound way. These practices enable us to listen, reflect, and be receptive to His guidance, peace, and transformative work in our lives. It is in these quiet moments that we can truly know and experience the greatness and exaltation of God.
Stillness also means to quiet the noise. Put off the T.V., push away the nagging worry, and ignore the phone. Stop fidgeting about what will or will not happen. Move away from all forms of noise – mental or physical – and keep your mind on God.
5. Listen to worship songs and pray along
One powerful way to seek a deeper connection with God is by listening to worship songs and actively engaging in prayer while doing so. Music has the ability to touch our hearts, uplift our spirits, and create an atmosphere of reverence and praise. By incorporating worship songs into your prayer time, you can enhance your communication with God.
Ephesians 5:19-20 (NIV): “Speak to one another with psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs. Sing and make music in your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.”
Engaging in worship through music is a beautiful way to connect with God and express our adoration and thankfulness. When you listen to worship songs, let the lyrics resonate deeply within you. Allow them to guide your prayers, helping you to articulate your feelings, surrender your burdens, and express your love for God. Sing along, raising your voice in praise and worship. Let the music become a vehicle for your prayers, drawing you into a more intimate encounter with the Divine.
Whether you prefer contemporary Christian music, hymns, or worship songs from different traditions, find melodies and lyrics that speak the truth, resonate with your heart, and align with your desire to connect with God. Let the music serve as a powerful tool to help you express your deepest longings and commune with God on a profound level.
EXPERIENCE IT NOW – Pray, right now. About this blog post, how do you feel? Are you grateful? Do you have questions? What are your desires for God? Speak to your Father now.