Thinking has its place. We ought to think but thinking shouldn’t be confused with praying. Most people are thinking about it instead of praying about it. So, they wonder why they don’t get an answer from God.
God is not sure of what action you want Him to take on that matter when you simply think about it instead of praying.
Deep thinking can lead to praying but thinking is not equal to praying. Thinking shouldn’t take the place of prayer. You need to know when your mind can no longer handle it and it is time to engage your spirit in intense prayer.Deep thinking can lead to praying but thinking is not equal to praying. Thinking shouldn't take the place of prayer. Click To Tweet
Most of us come to God’s presence with the intention of praying but we end up thinking. Unfortunately, we assume we are praying when actually we are thinking.
The following are signs that you are just thinking about it; you are not praying;
- You pray only in your mind.
I have heard Christians say, “I am praying to God in my mind.” There is no problem with praying occasionally in the mind but when you pray only in your mind you might simply be thinking about the issue, you are not praying about it. You think you are praying but you are simply thinking.Those who pray consistently know that praying in the mind alone is not enough. Click To Tweet
- Your mouth is not engaged.
Most of the time if you don’t open your mouth to say the things in your heart to God you will simply end up thinking instead of praying. By opening your mouth to talk, the burden is taken off your mind into the spirit. Opening your mouth helps you concretize the burdens in your heart.
- You end up sleeping.
If you always end up sleeping when you pray you are probably thinking and not praying. You could not have been actively praying and end up sleeping. You slept off because, in the process of thinking, you became weaker and slept off.
- You came out of the place of prayer more worried and anxious.
The Bible teaches that when we pray burdens are lifted, worries and anxieties are dissolved (Philippians 4:6-7). But when you only think about the issue the problem may become magnified instead of getting solved. The peace of God that transcends all human understanding ought to guard your heart after praying.
- You are weaker in the body after praying.
One of the gains of praying is that it also generates physical strength. You become physically strong when you pray. When the Bible says those who wait on the Lord renew their strength (Isaiah 40:28-30), I believe it is not just about spiritual strength it is also about physical strength.One of the gains of praying is that it also generates physical strength. Click To Tweet
One way to break physical weakness is to go and pray. If you always become weaker in your body after praying, you were probably thinking instead of praying.One way to break physical weakness is to go and pray. Click To Tweet
- You didn’t get an answer, an encouragement or any idea about the issue you prayed about.
You came out more confused, depressed and beclouded. You probably didn’t pray about it; you were thinking about it.
You may not come up with a tangible answer but one thing that prayer will always do is that you will have the peace of God in your heart.
If you don’t have at least this peace, you probably thought about it you didn’t pray about it.
- Your mind wanders.
You didn’t just think about the issue at hand, you were also thinking about other things. You have to constantly call yourself back to focus your mind on the issue at hand. If you constantly experience this in prayer, you were thinking about it not praying.There is a way genuine praying concentrates your mind on the issue at hand. Click To Tweet
Don’t get this wrong; this is not a call to stop thinking but caution not to substitute thinking for praying.
Thinking, as noted earlier, has its place. But we shouldn’t fall into that deception that we are still praying when our “prayer time” is characterized with uttermost silence, weakness, slumber, confusion and lack of passion.
The prayer life of saints like Moses, Abraham, Daniel, Samuel, Paul, Peter, Hannah and our Lord Jesus Christ shows that prayer is a spiritual exercise that engages the spirit, soul and body of a man.Prayer is a spiritual exercise that engages the spirit, soul and body of a man. Click To Tweet
If you want to really start praying instead of thinking do the following;
- Change your prayer posture.
I always know that I am not serious about praying when I lie down or kneel. My best prayer posture is to pace the floor up and down. There is a reason Elijah put his face between his knees (1 Kings 18:42). You need to understand the prayer posture that keeps you active in prayer. If you are not active, you might end up thinking instead of praying.If you are not active in prayer, you might end up thinking instead of praying. Click To Tweet
- Speak out.
Say to God what is in your heart. Your thinking is tailored towards what you are saying when you speak out. So, cry out, speak, talk to God about it. Discuss it with Him. By speaking out your mind, your spirit is focused on the subject of prayer so that you don’t just think about it. Luke 11:2 says, “When you pray, say…” In other words, speak out!By speaking out your mind, your spirit is focused on the subject of prayer so that you don’t just think about it. Click To Tweet
- You may need to change your prayer place.
Sometimes, we end up thinking about it instead of praying about it because our environment is not conducive to praying out loud. When we cannot pray out loud we might end up just thinking about it. In a bid not to draw attention when we raise our voice in prayer, we keep silent and simply begin to think instead of praying. If it is possible, change to a place that is conducive to praying. If not, you need to learn how to pray in your mind and not just thinking about issues.You cannot have a prayer life without a prayer time. Click To Tweet
- Have a prayer time.
You cannot have a prayer life without a prayer time. When do you want to pray? By fixing a time for your prayers you know that it is not going to be about thinking but praying. In Matthew 6:6&7, the Bible says, “When you pray.” In other words, there ought to be a time allocated to prayer. This is a great way to avoid just thinking about issues but praying about them.
- Plan your praying.
If you don’t come to God’s presence with the things you really want to pray about, you may end up thinking about many things instead of praying. Perhaps this is the reason Jesus often ask people who seek Him what they really want. When you go armed with the things you want to engage God with, there is all likelihood you are going to really pray.
- Meditate in the Word of God about the matter before you start praying.
The Word of God is like wood. More fire is generated when it is added to your prayer. There’s no other way to generate a real burden to pray more than meditating in the word.
Actually, true praying is taking God’s word back to Him on the matters of our life. Praying is taking God up on His promises; asking Him to act in accordance with His words.
Perhaps, the reason we end up thinking is that we don’t know what God has said about the matters of our lives.True praying is taking God’s word back to Him on the matters of our life. Click To Tweet
- Speak in other tongues.
I know that there are times the mouth is really heavy and our mind is too weak to concentrate on God. The mind is beclouded and you feel so weak. At such moments, the best thing to do is speak in tongues. By doing this, you are speaking mystery because your spirit is directly connected to God. You are releasing your spirit such that it can control the activities of your mind. It curbs it from wandering or becoming distracted by needless thoughts.
Prayer is a spiritual exercise. It cannot be done with the mind only, the spirit has to be engaged. You have to ensure that your spirit is communicating with God. These are hard times. Your spirit must be on fire. Don’t just think about it.
Pray about it because there are solutions in the spirit that the mind cannot fathom. You have been thinking about it, now go and pray about it!Pray because there are solutions in the spirit that the mind cannot fathom. Click To Tweet
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