This is lesson 1 of 2 in the Prayer youth series. See also the adult edition of this lesson.
Looking to grow in your personal prayer life? Try this 4-step method to bring a simple, biblical structure and focus to your prayer time.
P = Praise
Start by praising God: telling him who he is to you and what you are thankful for. This will get your heart in the right place as you begin connecting with God in prayer.
R = Repent
Next, move in to a short time of repentance: admitting to God your faults and allowing him to convict you of the things that are wrong in your life. This is the natural response of a sinner in the presence of a sinless God (Isaiah 6).
Isaiah 6:1-6 It was in the year King Uzziah died[a] that I saw the Lord. He was sitting on a lofty throne, and the train of his robe filled the Temple. 2 Attending him were mighty seraphim, each having six wings. With two wings they covered their faces, with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew. They were calling out to each other, “Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of Heaven’s Armies! The whole earth is filled with his glory!” Their voices shook the Temple to its foundations, and the entire building was filled with smoke. Then I said, “It’s all over! I am doomed, for I am a sinful man. I have filthy lips, and I live among a people with filthy lips. Yet I have seen the King, the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.”
A = Ask
Prayer requests are what most people think of when they envision prayer, and that’s the third step in this method. Philippians 4:6 teaches us that we should confidently present our requests to God.
Philippians 4:6 Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done.
Y = Yield
The final step is to spend some time yielding to God: stopping and quieting your heart to hear from God. This is probably the most difficult step in prayer, but it’s worth the effort to make it a habit.
At the end of the day, prayer is about submitting to God. You’re admitting that he is sovereign in your life. In prayer, we tell God that he is God and we are not.
- Watch the video together or invite someone to summarize the topic.
- What is your initial reaction to this video? Do you disagree with any of it? What jumped out at you?
- What are some helpful things you’ve learned about prayer? Have you ever tried the P-R-A-Y method? Which step seems the hardest to you?
- Make a list of the things you can praise God for.
- Read Isaiah 6:1-5. Describe Isaiah’s response to God. Why do you think he responded like this?
- What is the benefit of repentance in your prayer life? How will confessing things to God affect your relationships in life?
- Read Philippians 4:6-7. What are the commands in this verse? What are the promised benefits? Discuss.
- What does it mean to “yield” to God in prayer? Try to list some practical steps for developing this habit in your prayer life.
- Read Luke 18:9-11. Talk about the irony of the Pharisee’s prayer. What is the true heart of prayer?
- Write a personal action step based on this conversation.