Experience God’s healing power. God may choose to send you some type of healing through prayer when you ask Him for it. He’s always willing to give you spiritual healing, such as forgiveness for your sins or peace to heal difficult emotions you’re experiencing (such as anxiety or bitterness). Sometimes God is also willing to send you physical healing, when doing so will help accomplish His purposes in your life. When you pray for healing, be confident that God hears you and will do what’s best in response.

Experience praising God. When you praise God through prayer, you can connect with Him directly, since He will respond to your praise by pouring His love into your soul. Either speak or sing words of praise to God when you pray. Seek to live a lifestyle of worship by praying for God’s guidance about how you can best serve Him in every part of your life.

Experience God’s love. Spending time in prayer with God will help you bust the myths that God doesn’t really care about you, because you’ll encounter God’s love in powerful ways when you communicate with Him. Receive the love and forgiveness that God wants to give you by opening yourself up to Him in prayer.

Experience joy from God. God will give you joy when you pray. First, surrender all of your past pain, current worries, and future plans to God and welcome Him to work on your behalf with whatever concerns you. Then shift your focus from your concerns to Jesus, and the more you meditate on His love and care for you, the more joy will flood your soul.

Experience peace from God. Rather than wasting time and energy complaining about your problems, pray about them. Ask God to give you specific instructions for how to handle every problem that you bring to Him in prayer, and He will respond with both guidance and peace that is so strong that it will even surpass your understanding.

Take action on what God has told you. It’s a tragic waste to hear from God in prayer but fail to do what He tells you. Be sure to obey the messages you discern God giving you during prayer by taking whatever next steps you can take to respond faithfully.

Adapted from Experiencing God’s Presence: Learning to Listen While You Pray, copyright 2013 by Linda Evans Shepherd. Published by Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, Grand Rapids, Mich., http://bakerpublishinggroup.com/revell.    

Linda Evans Shepherd is an award-winning author, a successful speaker, and a radio personality. The president of Right to the Heart Ministries, she is the author of When You Don’t Know What to Pray and When You Need a Miracle, and the coauthor of the Potluck club books and the Potluck Catering Club series. She lives in Colorado. Visit her website at: www.visitlinda.com.   

Whitney Hopler, who has served as a Crosswalk.com contributing writer for many years, is author of the new Christian novel Dream Factory, which is set during Hollywood's golden age. Visit her website at: whitneyhopler.naiwe.com.

Publication date: September 10, 2013