Prayer - Definitions, Helps, and Forms


Prayer - Definitions, Helps, and Forms
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The King of the universe created us for relationship with Himself! Hearing His voice is our greatest joy! He invites us into prayer that brings light into His kingdom!

3 Hebrew Words

Following are the three most common words for prayer Old Testament. Their meanings carry an urgency.

  • nā’I (we) pray ; now. This word particle is often connected to hôshî‘ â nā’ meaning O Lord, save us! The Greek is hōsanna. The Hebrew ’ânnâ’ means beseech or Oh now!

  • pālalintervene, intercede, mediate.

  • shā’alask, inquire, plead, beg, request, desire, beseech. This meaning also involves a request for guidance. The children of Israel were often chastised for not asking. Whether it was a strategy for battle or personal direction, the Lord desired their inquiry into His will and heart.

    Jesus asks us to ask, so that we will receive. (John 16:23-24; Matthew 7:7-8; John 16:13)  He invites us to be participants in the outcomes in His Kingdom through prayer.

These Hebrew definitions infer a yearning to see “Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” (Matthew 6:10) 

3 helps for prayer

  • The Holy Spirit – The Holy Spirit guides our prayer. We wait before Him and listen with faith.1

  • Others – Praying with others builds a synergy of faith, gifts, and scope.

  • Preparation
    • Increasing in our knowledge of God’s love for us and others helps us to pray with the right lens.

    • Setting aside time to listen and read His word prepares us for prayer and praying His words.

    • Understanding His and our authority prepares us to use it in prayer.

      • God’s authority. Read Isaiah 40.

      • God’s authority given to Jesus.  Isaiah 9:6. “The government (miśrâ – rule dominion) shall be upon His shoulders.” This chapter is a prophecy of Jesus the Messiah Who is declared Ruler of All. “And His Name shall be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace.”

      • Jesus’ authority given to us. Matthew 28:18-20. Jesus said to His disciples, “All authority has been given to Me in Heaven and on earth. Therefore, go and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always even to the end of the age.”

        John 1:12. “To as many as received Him, to them He gave the right (Greek – also the power and authority) to become (Greek – to arise, be born into, be assembled to partake) children of God, even to those who believe in His name.” 
        As His children, He has given us authority over the darkness, so we arise and assemble ourselves to partake in the victory. We have been born into this authority.3
    • Trusting God. We believe that all things are possible with Him and that our prayers are treasured by Him and answered in His perfect timing! “And when He [the Lamb that was slain] had taken the book [or scroll], the four living creatures and the 24 elders fell down before the Lamb, having each one a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.” (Revelation 5:8)

Forms of Prayer

  • Petition.

  • Worship. Give thanks. Sing.

  • Read Scripture out loud, chapters at a time. Prayers come to mind while you are reading. Pray Scripture over the person or situation.

  • Ask.

  • Intercede. Tear down strongholds in His Name.
    “For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh but are divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying arguments and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God…” (2 Corinthians 10:3-5)

  • Discern. Pray toward root causes and inner wounds that need to be healed.

  • Agree with the promises in God’s word.

  • Proclaim His word.

  • Release the person or situation to God.

  • Use your spiritual gifts. You are uniquely gifted and will pray creatively like no other!2

  • Speak His Word and His Name.
    “When my anxious thoughts multiply within me, Your consolations delight my soul.” (Psalm 94:19) The enemy flees at the mention of His Name! Whisper His Name in the night!

  • Stand by and watch His salvation.
    When King Jehoshaphat heard that a great multitude was coming against him, he prayed,
          “We are powerless before this great multitude who are coming against us, nor do we know what to do, but our eyes are on Thee.”
    Then, the Lord spoke through Jahaziel with instruction,
          “Do not fear or be dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours but God’s.”
    Jahaziel told them to station themselves, stand, and see His salvation. Those appointed to sing, sang,
          “Give thanks to the Lord for His lovingkindness is everlasting!”
    As they sang, the Lord set ambushes and their enemy completely destroyed themselves. (2 Chronicles 20)

Lord, strengthen us to pray! 

For more on the Holy Spirit, see my writing HIS SIGWORK – No. 3, Spirit at
For more on spiritual gifts, see my writing Spiritual Gifts - A Greek Word Study. To purchase the Understanding Spiritual Gifts learning tool, please click here.

Shale Fragments™ - devotionals by Beth Ann Phifer is a division of Flower Girl Greetings, LLC. ©2020, All Rights Reserved.
Blessings and love in Him,
Beth Ann

Great love

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Tuesday, 23 July 2024

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Welcome to Shale Fragments, a collection of writings and art for individual and group use!

Teaching God’s truth and the beauty of His Word is my greatest delight! My art card company, Flower Girl Greetings, was launched in 2012 with this purpose. In April 2020, became the gathering place for the writings.

As I have studied the rich meanings of the original Greek and Hebrew languages of the Bible, I continue to see beautiful progressions and connections that compel me to organize and convey their life-changing beauty! 

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