Learning to Pray When Life is Hard

When we are in times of difficulty, we must pray. Prayer is how we draw close to the Giver of Grace, the Comforter, the Healer, the One Who Rescues, the Deliverer.

And yet, if we have not learned how to pray, it is hard to learn to do in suffering. Sometimes, the best we can do is offer groans up toward heaven (which Paul recommends we do and encourages us that the Spirit of God helps us do just that).

To learn to pray, it can be useful to find good prayers to use as a guide.

Of course, the Psalms are always among the very best prayers you can take as your prayer guide.

When I find such prayers, I actually pray them using the actual words. And then I begin to change some words, adding my own words, but always seeking to make it “my” prayer.

Here is one of the prayers I found many decades ago. I return to it from time to time. I hope you will find this prayer just as useful.


Author Unknown,
Attributed to a battle-weary soldier near the end of the Civil War

I asked God for strength, that I might achieve;
I was made weak, that I might learn humbly to obey.

I asked for health, that I might do greater things;
I was given infirmity, that I might do better things.

I asked for riches, that I might be happy;
I was given poverty, that I might be wise.

I asked for power, that I might have the praise of men;
I was given weakness, that I might feel the need of God.

I asked for all things, that I might enjoy life;
I was given life, that I might enjoy all things.

I got nothing that I asked for, but everything I hoped for.
Almost despite myself, my unspoken prayers were answered.

I am among all people most richly blessed.

May you be among all people, most richly blessed.
Pastor Brian


Brian Rice

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