How Should We Pray?


Does the Bible say how we're supposed to pray? For example, on our knees, or with our heads bowed? I don't want to offend God by praying in the wrong way.


No, the Bible doesn’t command us to take any one position when we pray. It doesn’t say (for example) that we must always pray on our knees, or with our hands raised, or even with our eyes closed.

The Bible, in fact, gives many examples of people who prayed in a number of physical positions. When King David confessed his sins and prayed fervently that God would spare the life of one of his sons, “He fasted and spent the nights lying in sackcloth on the ground” (2 Samuel 12:16). On the other hand, when Abraham prayed that God would spare the city of Sodom (in spite of their sin), he “remained standing before the Lord” (Genesis 18:22).

The important thing in prayer isn’t our physical position, but the attitude of our hearts. When we pray, do we realize we are approaching the Creator and Lord of the Universe? Or do we treat our prayers casually, as if we were simply talking to a neighbor? And do we realize the great privilege God has given us by allowing us to come into His presence—a privilege that cost God His only Son?

Don’t misunderstand me, however; our physical position is important in prayer, because it reflects our attitude toward God and can help us focus on Him. Make sure of your commitment to Jesus Christ—and then joyfully but reverently come into His presence as you pray. The Bible says, “Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need” (Hebrews 4:16).

Have you prayed and asked Jesus to become Lord of your life?