Prayer is one of those things that we all know we should do, but sometimes it’s hard to start. John Piper said that prayer is “the splicing of our limp wire to the lightning bolt of heaven.” How desperately we need to meet with God not only for power and strength, but also for simple fellowship and nearness to Him.
The issue isn’t that we don’t realize the importance, but starting seems like an impossible task. There are so many things to pray for, but where do we start?
I once saw someone’s prayer list where they used mind mapping to organize their prayers into categories. This was such a great idea!
So often, if I’m making a list, I think of more prayers for a category, but I’ve already moved on and can’t add more easily, and I get overwhelmed by this multi page list of words.
By mind mapping my prayers, I no longer have an overwhelming list, but feel comfortable with both adding to categories easily, and also praying through the ones I have already written.
The church I am an assistant pastor at, Redemption Church Delray Beach, recently began a prayer series and encouraged people to try praying for 30 minutes a day. We even setup a #30for30prayer challenge.
One of the things we’ve done is listed a few categories as starter points for areas to pray for. As a way to help you get started, here are some category ideas for you:
- Your church
- The leadership, the body, events, outreaches, etc.
- Other Local churches
- Your city
- The saved and unsaved people in your city
- Global churches/missionaries
- Family and Friends
- Local/National/Global issues
- Personal Needs
This list can seem overwhelming, but I think writing it down in a mind map has helped me feel like it’s not only organized, but doable.
(Don’t forget that these are ideas of things to pray FOR, but that we also pray in thanks to God, for forgiveness, in simple praise to Him, and many other things that you can add to this list of categories.)
This is a great method to use over and over again by spending just five minutes to refresh and update what God has put on your heart to pray for, whether daily, weekly, or less frequently.
As a final thought, I want to help those who personally like using digital options, Mindnode is a great app for both iPhone, iPad, and Mac that I love using.
I hope this list and thoughts on using a mind map are helpful to you as you prepare to pray. Have you found a specific method of keeping track of prayers that has helped you pray more?
Travis Sinks lives in South Florida with his wife and son. He is an assistant pastor and a freelancer for churches in web design, marketing, and graphic design. You can read his blog aimed at encouraging and equipping ministry leaders at travissinks.com and can learn more about his service for churches at tnsinksdesigns.com. twitter & instagram | @travissinks