DISCUSS the role of prayer in your lives up to this point. Then spend time discussing the Voice video
and working through the discussion questions below.
THE POINT OF THE VIDEO: Prayer isn’t just talking to God, it’s hearing from him too.
1. What is the difference between talking to God and talking with God?
2. Saying we heard something “from God” can sound a little crazy; and yet most of us would say we’ve heard from God at least once in our life, in one way or another. If this is the case for you, discuss a time you heard God speak. How did you respond?
3. How could our everyday lives change if we spent our days in a back and forth conversation with God?
4. If hearing from God sounds crazy, then it’s time to get crazy! Take a few moments to complete the following statements.
The kind of prayer life I want to have with God looks like...
I think this might be stopping me from getting there…
5. What are some things that are stopping us from having a more conversational relationship with God?
6. What is one change that you are going to make this week to help you hear from God?
7. Do you still have questions about prayer? Process them with your discipler.
8. Spend the next week experimenting in conversational prayer with God. We’ve included some simple steps to get you going. Look these over and remember: prayer is as much about hearing God as it’s about talking to him. If this is new to you, remember there’s no right or wrong way to start. Just start.
ASSIGNMENT: Spend a week doing the Introduction to Prayer Practices below. Make note of any challenges, breakthroughs, or insights you gain from the Lord by writing them in your journal or in a note taking app.
By Megan Koch (Adapted Version)
It may seem like there’s a lot that goes into prayer—especially if this new to you! But don’t worry; prayer is simpler than you think. It’s all about finding what works well for you.
Take note of some of these steps to help you begin your prayer practices.
Find a Space. Find a space or two you’re fond of and won’t mind returning for prayer each time. It could be an office, a comfy chair, the kitchen with a warm light turned on, a coffee shop, a porch. If the space isn’t working for you, then there’s no harm in finding a new prayer space.
Find a Time. Find a time or two during your day that you can set aside for prayer. Start small; it’s okay to start with five to ten minute prayer sessions. The key here is to work your schedule around your prayer time, not the other way around.
Remove Distractions. This could include external distractions, like other people, the television, your task list, turning your phone to airplane mode, or playing soothing music. When talking with God, eliminating extra noise is key.
This also includes internal distractions—the stuff inside your head that might keep you from hearing God’s voice clearly. Is there someone you need to forgive who’s on your mind? Is it hard for your mind to settle down? Perhaps you’re restless because of how much you have to get done today, or you’re uncertain how to pray. Whatever it is, put it out there. Know and trust that God is in the room with you (even if you don’t feel it yet) and let the Holy Spirit help you to even picture Jesus sitting with you like a friend.
Interact with God’s Word. An excellent way to begin prayer practices is by reading a passage from the Bible. Go over the day’s passage once to read it, a second time to know it, and a third time—more slowly this time—to let it sink in. Let this be the sounding board for your conversation with God.
Start the Conversation. You’ll see there are some prompts provided. Complete them in a new way each day. Grab a journal or notepad, and talk to God as you write your answers to the prompts. He hears your prayers whether you write them out or not. The action of writing it down is for you, not for him. Or, if writing isn’t your jam, try thinking your responses, or even talking out loud.
Work through this practice slowly. Remember, this is an experiment with God, so it’s ok if it feels a little strange. You’re just trying things out. As you write, sit and listen. After you speak, pause long enough to see where God may take your thoughts. Then, when you think you might be hearing God’s voice, respond. It most likely won’t come in an audible voice, but journal through the experience as you go. Come back next time ready to share with your disciple at least one way God spoke to you through the practice this week.