I was six years old when I realized I had a lisp. Do you remember that childhood chant “She sells seashells down by the seashore”? I was challenged to say it fives times fast. That didn’t turn out so well for me. Thankfully, my mild speech impediment improved with time. I learned to speak slowly and to press my tongue against the palate of my mouth. I practiced speaking words with the letter “s,” and eventually I was able to talk without my tongue getting in the way.
My prayer life has been a similar journey. In the beginning, it felt awkward to talk to someone with whom I wasn’t familiar and who I couldn’t see. I stumbled over words and requests and felt like I wasn’t making any sense with my prayers. At the recommendation of a friend, I began a prayer journal. This helped me memorize specific Bible verses to pray.

One of the first verses I memorized was Psalm 143:8, “Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.” 
The book of Psalms is full of rich prayers. When praying for the needs of others, I’ve found Philippians 4:7 and Ephesians 1:18 to be appropriate in many circumstances. One of my favorite verses to pray is God’s command to Moses and Aaron on how to bless the Israelites in Numbers 6: 24-26.
“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make His face shine on you and be gracious to you; the Lord turn His face towards you and give you peace.
It’s hard to go wrong when you’re praying God’s Word.
Last summer I joined a prayer small group. Several circumstances in my life had me feeling defeated, and I needed encouragement. I’m certain God led me to this wonderful group of ladies. Every week we joined together and prayed for healing, for marriages, for financial relief, for protection, and for broken relationships. Our time together left me with a deeper faith in the power and love of God. Sometimes we need to see effective faith in action to inspire and renew our own faith.
Not wanting to lapse back into discouragement, I’ve continued to make prayer a daily practice. Since making prayer a priority, I’ve noticed I’m not as blindsided by attacks from my enemy as I once was. I have the wisdom and strength to step around recurring pitfalls. I see the bigger picture now. God is continually working in my life and in the lives of those around me. Most importantly, I know who to run to when I’m feeling overwhelmed, and He never fails to fill me with His peace.
In the same way I had to practice saying the letter “s” to correct my speech problem, I also have to continually practice prayer to increase my faith.

Proverbs 18:10 tells us, “The name of the Lord is a strong fortress; the righteous run to Him and are safe.”


If you sense God has more for your life, 21 Days of Prayer is a great place to start believing Him for all that He has for you. As you practice seeking Him first, He will move on your behalf like never before. You will start to see the power of prayer impact your relationships, work, family, and every area of your life. Whether you join us in person or online, we would love for you to be part of 21 Days of Prayer. 

Click here to join Church of the Highlands for 21 Days of Prayer. Live from 6am-7am CDT or On-Demand for 24 hours. 

Inspiring others to place their hope in Jesus is Jill Jessen‘s desire as she writes. Having received inspiration from daily devotionals for years, she appreciates writers who have shared their life with her. She believes we learn from living and that everyone has a story to tell. Jill and her husband Greg have three children and are now entering in to the “empty nest” phase of life. The birth of their first grandchild this year was a sweet reminder of Gods perfect gifts.

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