I have stated in previous posts that God is teaching me how to pray. One of the things I am learning to do is to use Scripture in my prayers. The first time I heard someone talk about praying Scripture, I smiled, and nodded my head, not wanting to look like I was clueless. But I was clueless. Over time, and with much study of God’s Word, I have begun to recognize when I hear Scripture being prayed. It is simply the act of taking a Bible verse or passage, and changing the words just enough so that they are coming from you, directed to God. Some verses, of course, are prayers, and so it is easy to simply pray them. Others are not prayers, but can be converted. For those of you who aren’t certain what I mean, let me give you an example.

A prayer for rain and a good harvest:
Psalm 65:9-13 (NCV) – You take care of the land and water it; you make it fertile. The rivers of God are full of water. Grain grows because you make it grow. You send rain to the plowed fields; you fill the rows with water. You soften the ground with rain, and then you bless it with crops. You give the year a good harvest, and you load the wagons with many crops. The desert is covered with grass and the hills with happiness. The pastures are full of flocks, and the valleys are covered with grain. Everything shouts and sings for joy.
Prayer: God, You take care of the land and water it; You make it fertile. Lord, Your rivers are full of water. Grain grows because You make grow. Father, please send rain, fill the rows with water. Soften the ground with rain, and bless it with crops. I ask that you cover this dry land with grass, and the hills with happiness. Please fill the pastures with flocks and livestock, and cover the valleys with grain. May everything shout for joy and sing your praises!

We are in a drought where I live, and so even though there are many who complain about the rain, I won’t apologize for praying for it. 🙂

I pray 2 Peter 3:9, 1 Timothy 2:3-4, and 1 John 5:14-15 for the salvation of specific people. I just plug in their names. The verses from Peter and Timothy talk about how it is not God’s will that anyone perish, but that they come to the truth, and repentence. Therefore, I know that it is His will that all people, including those whose names I plug in, become saved. The verses in 1 John reminds me that when we pray within God’s will, he will give us our petitions. I pray that to as I thank Him for His faithfulness.

The more a person reads the Bible, the more verses are found that can be used as prayers. I pray prayers of praise, worship, petition, repentance and seeking forgiveness. These are by no means the extent of my prayers, but I do use them, often. For me, I find that if I whisper, or speak them outloud, they somehow become more personalized. I own them more. Which is strange because normally when I pray, I need to pray internally, or I feel disconnected from my words. I don’t know why that is. Maybe I’m just weird:-) My point here is that you may need to pray Scriptures at different times and in different ways so that you find the way that helps you to make the words your own as you take them before the Father. If it feels hollow to you praying one way, try another. The only thing I would caution is that you not make them your only prayer time. You still need those words that come straight from your own heart, that connect your spirit to God’s spirit.

Now, I still haven’t answered the question of why. Why should we use Scripture to pray? I grappled with this before I began praying Scripture. I even grappled with it after I had been praying them for quite a while and had noticed a change in my prayer life. So I prayed about the why. I asked God to show me, and He did.

2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NCV) says “All Scripture is given by God and is useful for teaching, for showing people what is wrong in their lives, for correcting faults, and for teaching how to live right. Using Scriptures, the person who serves God will be capable, having all that is needed to do every good work.”

The answer is in the first 6 words. All Scripture is given by God. The Bible is the inspired Word of God. The words are His. If they came from God, does it not make sense to use the words that He pleased to have in His book to
communicate with Him? What better way to pray within His will than to pray
His words? Praying Scripture is one element to enhancing, deepening your prayer time with your Lord, and thus strengthening your relationship with Him.