A Beginner’s Guide to Praying and Reading the Bible.

First, you will need 30 minutes alone and undisturbed. Try to use the same chair, in the same place, every day. This will become a sacred time and place for you.

I recommend you do this first thing in the morning. Which means you will need to go to bed 30 minutes earlier!

Begin by praying along these lines:
“Father, here I am. I am your child. Speak to me.”

Open your Bible to the Psalms. Read one Psalm each day. Read it aloud, or sing the Psalm with a tune of your own.

Pause. Wait quietly before the Lord, listen with your spirit (located below your diaphragm region). If God should speak with his “still, small voice” on your inside, take your journal, date it, and write it down.

Then, open your Bible to the New Testament. If reading for the first time, I recommend you start with the Gospel of Luke and then, one chapter a day, meditatively read through the rest of the New Testament.

In the remaining 10 minutes or so, I recommend you pray using the acrostic “ACTS” as a guide: Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, and Supplication.

ADORATION: Tell God how much you love him. Praise him for who he is as well as for what he has done.

CONFESSION: as the Holy Spirit brings unconfessed sins to mind, ask God to forgive you and help you do better. Then, THANK God that he forgives you because of Jesus Christ. Ask God if there is anyone YOU need to forgive, or anyone to whom you owe an apology.

THANKSGIVING: Thank God for ALL the blessings of your life – especially the things we take for granted.

SUPPLICATION: Ask that your own needs of this day be met, as well as those for others. Remember before him family and friends who are lost. Pray for those in government. Pray for your pastor, congregation, and missionaries.

Complete your time of private worship with a declaration along these lines:

“Holy Spirit, I ask you to fill me with your life and power. Use me as a witness of Jesus this day. May your kingdom come everywhere my feet take me. I go forth this day in the name of Jesus Christ! AMEN.”

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