When we think of prayer and Bible Study, we usually think about them as two very separate things. Two different spiritual habits; both important, but not things that necessarily overlap.
But I think that prayer is a really important part of our Bible Study. When we are reading God’s word, why wouldn’t we want to do that WITH God? Prayer is a great way to seek God’s wisdom and to ask for his guidance as we read.
If you’d like to see us explore this topic more in video format, check out this video from our YouTube channel:
So, let’s explore how to use prayer in your Bible Study routine!
Pray before you start
Prayer is a great way to set the tone for your Bible study, to focus you upon God, drawing near to him and asking for him to be with you as you explore his word. This is also a great way to calm yourself, remove the stresses and anxieties of your day from your mind so that you are ready to focus on God.
Here is an example prayer that you could pray:
Dear God, thank you for the gift that you have given us in your word. Be with me as I explore your word today, open my eyes to understand the words that you are speaking, open my heart to be obedient to where you lead me. Help me to understand the words that I read, help me to stay focused and that this Bible study will be fruitful and bring glory to you. Amen.
As you are reading through the Bible, and studying it’s words, you may come across different topics that you want to pray about. Whether you read a command or direction from God and you want to ask God for his help in following that direction; or you read a story about God and want to respond with prayers of praise. When you come across something that you want to respond to in prayer – do it!
For me, a great way to do that is to use post-it notes. Simply write a short prayer on a post-it note and add it into your Bible, with the passage that prompted that prayer.
Praying scripture is something that can sound really complicated and daunting, but when I actually looked at this idea more closely, it can actually be quite simple and easy to do – so don’t panic!
All you need to do, is take Bible verse (don’t just find anything out of context, it’s very helpful to understand the verse first), and turn it into a prayer.
Some examples of how you could do this could be:
“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves,”Philippians 2:3
Dear God, I am sorry for when I have acted out of selfish ambition of vain conceit. Humble me and help me to value others above myself. Amen.
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”Deuteronomy 31:6
Dear God, thank you that you are with me always, that you will never leave me. Help me to remember this so that I am not afraid or terrified, so that I can be strong and courageous. Amen.
Do you use a prayer journal? Prayer journals are a great way to capture our prayerful reflections and responses to the Bible study that we have time. Whether in the middle of your study, or at the end, take some time to pause and journal your prayers. Think about: what have I learnt about God through this passage? Is there anything I have been called to do? What emotions has my Bible study made me feel? How do I want to respond to God? How has this Bible study impacted my life?
If you don’t use a prayer journal and are interested in getting started, you can watch this video from our YouTube channel:
Finish in Prayer
Just as we started our Bible study in prayer, we can also finish our Bible study in prayer. Thank God for the opportunity to study his word, for all that you’ve learnt, for what he has revealed about himself. Ask for his help to live out what you have learnt in the week ahead, and for the words you have read to remain with you.
How else do you use prayer in your Bible study?
Other blog posts you might enjoy…
- How to start reading the Bible
- 4 tips to improve your Bible Study
- How to make prayer your go-to response