Back to Basics: Obstacles to Prayer

Did you ever notice that when you want to start something, a hobby, a diet, an exercise program, etc., things start to magically get in the way? It is like the obstacles just come out of thin air! This can be true when embarking on a regular prayer schedule.

So, In yesterday’s Facebook Go Live, I talked about what these obstacles are and gave some suggestions on  how to overcome them. Here are three of the most pressing obstacles I’ve come across.

Some obstacles we face include:

1. Discouragement

When we pray and don’t seem to get the answer we want or we don’t think God is answering us quickly enough, we can become discouraged. Or, maybe we feel lie our prayer is not effective and we want to give up. Don’t!

God’s ways are not our ways and we need to trust that God knows what He is doing. God always answers us, even if the answer is no. And, prayer is always effective. As humans, we have a habit of basing a lot (too much) on emotions but God is above our emotions. He wants us to go beyond the need for “signs” and “miracles” into a deeper connection of the wills.

2. No time

I think the number one reason people neglect prayer is because they don’t think they have the time. However, the truth is, the busier you are, the more you need to be grounded in prayer. And, truth be told, if I can give a little tough love, we all make time for the things that are important to us. It is a matter of priorities and finding the time.

3. Temptations

Temptations are all around us. I remember when I was young and being told to “rebuke the devil, the flesh, and the world” in order to resist temptations. Unfortunately, there are many people who don’t believe the devil is real. They think he is a myth. The devil is real and the last thing he wants is for us to pray and turn to God, so it is important that we are aware and vigilant against his wiles. The flesh is where laziness, gluttony, and pleasures come in. The can seduce us away from the desire and will to pray. Finally, the “world” tries to steal us from God and prayer. It bedazzles us with the show of glamour and riches and living a “wild” lifestyle – a lifestyle away from God. We must keep watch and not let today’s society lure us into its snares.

(To be clear, money and riches, in and of themselves are not evil. They are neutral. It is the inordinate desire and pursuit of them that can become evil if we lose site of God and His plan for our lives.)

How to Overcome Those Obstacles

These (and other) obstacles to prayer may seem insurmountable but they aren’t. All is possible with God, including working through those obstacles. Here are some suggestions to help you:

A: Be patient: Overcoming obstacles won’t happen overnight. Every day, take what steps you can to work through your prayer difficulties and don’t allow yourself to get annoyed or bothered by the obstacles you face.

B: Persevere: Don’t give up! Just because we don’t see the light at the end of the tunnel doesn’t mean it isn’t there! Again, slow and steady wins the race, so do your best to pray every day, trust in God, and know that your efforts will produce fruit.

C: Get Help: You don’t have to try and deal with the obstacles you face alone. Get yourself an accountability partner, spiritual director, or life coach that you can trust and use that person to help you work through any issues or situations that get in the way of you having a consistent and fulfilling prayer life.

Whatever your do: I encourage you to fight through the obstacles of prayer head on. Ask God for the grace to help you overcome the obstacles to prayer. He will! And, I will pray for you. May God Bless you!

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REMINDER: I go live in my Facebook group every Monday at 10:35 am EST and every Thursday at 1:30 pm EST. I hope you will join me!

PSST: If you are looking for accountability or focused encouragement in growing your spiritual life, I am here to help. Supporting and empowering women is my passion and I’d love to chat with you and see if we would be a fit for working together. Book a call with me here.