Developing a Mind to Pray

By Rev. Alvin Simpkins

We human beings have a developed brain and limitless potential. Since even wild animals can gradually be trained with patience, the human mind also can gradually be trained to pray in a daily step by step process. The brain is a most wonderful part of the human anatomy. Yet it is the most mysterious. There is so much we don’t know and may never know about the way our minds works. Most of us want to improve our prayer lives, we want to better ourselves, to move up to another plateau of spirituality. But many times, something seems to block our way.

The longer I serve the Lord, study His word and pray, the more I realize the importance of thoughts, words and prayer. The mind is the leader or forerunner of all actions. Romans 8:5 makes it clear: “For those who are according to the flesh and are controlled by its unholy desires set their minds on and pursue those things which gratify the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit and are controlled by the desires of the Spirit set their minds on and seek those things which gratify the Spirit.”

Our actions are a direct result of our thoughts. If we have a negative mind, we will have a negative life. If, on the other hand, we renew our mind according to God’s Word and a life of prayer we will please the very heart of God.

Many Christian’s problems are rooted in thinking patterns that actually produce the problems they experience in their lives. Satan offers wrong thinking to everyone, but we do not have to accept his offer. A prayerful mind makes it more difficult for the enemy to suggest ungodly thoughts in our minds. It is a vital necessity that we line up our thoughts with God’s thoughts. The mind is a spiritual battlefield. To develop a mind to pray, will take time, study of God’s word and the practice of daily prayer. You must never give up in the process of growing up spiritually in our minds. Little by little as we pray daily we are changing. The more you change as you pray, the better your spiritual walk with the Lord will be. When you begin to see God’s great plan for you in your prayer life and thinking, you will begin to walk in a new anointing.

The mind to pray daily will develop in the same way that a little child’s mind develops. Even at spiritual birth, we have the “mind of Christ” according to I Corinthians 2:16, but in subsequent growth that mind must contend with established habits, hobbies, and hungers. The culture in which we live and the work of satan fight against us constantly. Prayer breaks the power of satan over our minds and assists us in changing the mental patterns we have established over the years.

The following strategies will assist you in daily developing a mind to pray.
Set your mind to pray
Colossians 3:2 states you should “set your affection on things above, not on things of the earth”. We must walk closely with God through a mind to pray. We must mind the concerns of another world more than the concerns of this life. Our home is there, our treasure is there and our heads must be there and we must pray to be there forever.

Gird up your mind
You must let the loins or strength and vigour of your minds be exerted in your daily duty to pray. Disengage yourselves from all that would hinder you, and go on resolutely in your obedience to God.

Be sober-minded
Be vigilant against all your spiritual dangers and enemies, and be temperate and modest in the whole of your behavior. Be sober-minded also in opinion, as well as in practice. The main work of a Christian lies in the right management of his heart and mind.

Renew the mind daily
The mind must be renewed daily. Conversion and sanctification are the renewing of the mind, a change not of the substance, but of the qualities of the soul. The man is not what he was, old things are passed away, all things are become new. The renewing of the mind is the renewing of the whole man, for out of it are the issues of life. The progress of sanctification, dying to sin more and more and living to righteousness more and more, is the carrying on of this renewing work of the mind through daily prayer.

Take every Thought captive
“For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war after the flesh: For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strongholds; casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ, II Corinthians 10:3-5. The work of a Christian is warfare, not after the flesh indeed, for it is a spiritual warfare, with spiritual enemies and for spiritual purposes. What opposition is made against the gospel by the powers of sin and satan in the hearts of men, but these strongholds are pulled down by the gospel through the grace and power of God through prayer.

Mind stayed on Him
Those that trust in God must have their minds stayed upon him and such as do so God will keep in perpetual peace, and that peace shall keep them day and night. God will give inward peace, outward peace, peace with God, peace of conscience, peace under all events. When your mind is stayed on God, you will begin to grow spiritually, mentally, emotionally and financially.

If we think fleshly thoughts, wrong thoughts, negative thoughts, we cannot walk in the Spirit. Your life may be in a state of chaos because of years of wrong thinking. You must come to the realization that your life will not get straightened out until your mind does. For most Christians, the natural trend of their thoughts is to drift and spread. Our minds turn from one thing to another, dwelling on each just long enough for a pleasant and passing impression. Be serious about tearing down the strongholds satan has built in your mind. You must use the weapons of the Word, praise, fasting and prayer.

For believers, right thinking is a vital necessity. A vital necessity is something that is so important that on simply cannot live without it. Just as my physical life is dependent upon my vital signs, so my spiritual life is dependent upon spending regular, quality time with God in fervent prayer.

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