Humble Prayer: A Doorway Leading to Hope and Healing

Gold Brush Stroke


When it comes to prayer, I’m kind of a formula girl. I grew up praying memorized prayers.

  • Meal Prayer: Bless us our Lord and these our gifts, which we are about to receive from Thy bounty. Amen. 
  • The Lord’s Prayer: Our Father, who art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy name. Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us…. Amen. You know the one. 
  • Bedtime Prayer: Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep. If I should die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take. Amen.

There is something comforting about a prayer format. One we can share with other believers. One we can recite together. 

But I’ve since learned the value of an ongoing conversation with God. A spontaneous prayer if you will. In fact, I’m rarely satisfied, with our standard meal prayer anymore (which has changed to my husband’s Come Lord Jesus one).

I prefer instead to pray from “what comes.”

Yet if I’m not careful my “what comes” is a litany of “I wants” or “You should’s.”  My conversation with God turns into a recitation of what I need or want instead of submission and honest appeal to the Most High. 

Apparently I’m not the only one who struggles with this. Acrostics, such as this popular one (A.C.T.S.: Adoration. Confession. Thanksgiving. Supplication.), have been created to offer guidance for praying. 

Acrostics help us stay focused on what’s important in prayer.

Simple and Sincere Prayer

Many of us are or have been at one time fearful of praying (out loud at least). We may fear doing it wrong or worry about what others might think.

But praying isn’t for God’s benefit but for ours. It’s not meant to be burdensome but freeing.

Our prayers don’t have to be lengthy or elaborate. Simple and sincere work just as well (maybe better). 

God already knows what we will say. The power of prayer isn’t in informing the Almighty of our needs. 

The power of prayer is in the hope and healing that come to us as we humble ourselves before the sovereign Lord. [←Tweet this.] 

The power of prayer is in acknowledging our need for Him as well as His love, mercy, and grace for us. 

Pocket Prayer

In his new book, Before Amen: The Power of a Simple Prayer, Max presents a pocket prayer, a simplified version distilled from different prayers of the Bible. It goes like this:

Father, you are good.

I need help. Heal me and forgive me.

They need help.

Thank you.

In Jesus’ name, amen

What’s wonderful about this prayer is how easy it is to remember and use for specific situations. 

I took the challenge Suzie Eller posed in her post to make this simple prayer my own. Here is my pocket prayer today:

Father, you are good and gracious.

I need your help as the holiday season is upon me. As I try to incorporate stillness into my days, heal me from the need to rush. 

Forgive me for trying to fill my life with meaning by doing, when you have already filled it by dying for me. 

So many need your help in their deep pain of living broken lives in the midst of the coming holidays. Assure them they are not alone, that you are there for them in their brokenness.

Thank you for your everlasting faithfulness.

In the precious name of Jesus, amen.

In chapter 1 of Before Amen, Max remarks that “Prayer is the hand of faith on the door handle of your heart. The willing pull. The
happy welcome to Jesus: ‘Come in, O King. Come in.'”

And now is always the perfect time to welcome the Lord into your heart. 

“The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth.” Psalm 145:18 

Reflections: In what way is praying difficult for you–distractions, consistency, boredom, a sense of disconnect, apparent unanswered prayers? If you struggle with knowing how to pray, consider making this pocket prayer your own as I did? 

Linking with Suzie Eller today. Read more encouraging posts about living free and praying simply by clicking here. 

To purchase your own copy of Max Lucado’s new book, click on the image below. 

948482: Before Amen: The Power of a Simple Prayer Before Amen: The Power of a Simple Prayer By Max Lucado

By His Grace,



  1. Cecelia Lester (Quiet Spirit) on November 23, 2014 at 4:09 pm

    Julie: As a prayer. I tend to be impatient. I once had a friend whose daughter had a bruised and bleeding kidney. Things weren’t going well and healing didn’t seem to be taking place, I talked terribly to God and TOLD him how he could fix this kidney. The girl got out of the hospital and had to have home tutoring through the schools. She reached a certain age and seemed to go her own way, big time. I have learned from that resultant experience that God works in His own time and has His reasons for the pace He takes.

    • Julie Sunne on November 24, 2014 at 8:46 am

      Good, but hard, lesson to learn, Cecelia. If we believe God is good, we need to trust that His plan and His timing are good and perfect, no matter what it may look like to us.

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Julie Sunne

Hello, I'm Julie, an imperfect wife and mother of four. Life in this broken world is not always easy. Yet, joy can be found in each day through the grace and mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ.

I find it's easy for our day's blessings to get lost in its happenings. But God's "mercies never end" (Lamentations 3:22) and His "grace is sufficient" (2 Corinthians 12:9).

May the posts and pages on this site offer you a measure of peace and encouragement.

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