9 Ways to Get Over the Fear of Praying Out Loud

Several weeks ago, I wrote about the importance of praying out loud with your children: Prayer is the heart of a relationship with Jesus.  How can there be relationship without communication? If we want our kids to develop a relationship with Him, they have to become comfortable with prayer, and that is much less likely to happen if they only hear prayers in church on Sundays. Praying as a family is critical. Despite the importance of family prayer, it has been very difficult for me to overcome my fear of praying out loud, even when the “audience” only involves small children and a husband. I know many people have this fear, so today I’m sharing nine things I have found helpful in getting over it. Don’t let your prayer discomfort minimize your opportunity to give your children the life-long gift of a rich prayer life! 1.       Pray out loud when you’re alone. If no one is around to hear you pray, do you feel comfortable praying out loud in front of yourself? I found one day that I couldn’t even do that! Start praying out loud when you’re alone and you’ll eliminate the surprise of hearing your own voice before you actually pray in front of someone else. 2.       Accept that you don’t have to pray like other people. I’m not a poetic, beautifully-flowing-praise-language kind of person. The problem is, it seems like everyone I hear praying out loud is. That has developed an expectation in my own mind that prayer needs to sound beautiful. My prayers sound conversational. When I accepted that and no longer tried to pray like other people pray, it became much easier. Pray out loud just like you would pray silently. 3.       Keep your prayers short. Really, it’s OK. I’ve mentally made it into such an event when I pray out loud that I feel like I really have to go all out and say something big when I do it. When you go long for the sake of going long, however, you end up saying things that are less heartfelt, less natural, and more awkward. Then you don’t want to do it again. Whenever you would normally end a silent prayer, end your verbal prayer. 4.       Try new types of prayer on your own before trying them out loud. I would like to start praying over my children at night, to give them the blessing of a prayer said just for them. However, I don’t currently pray for them unless there is a specific need, such as healing. The thought of suddenly praying out loud for conceptual things like their spiritual development and discernment is intimidating and keeps me from doing it. I’m going to start praying for them on my own for a while until I feel comfortable enough to pray audibly over them. 5.       Write down what you want to pray about before you pray. If part of your fear relates to just not knowing what to say, it is immensely helpful … Continue reading 9 Ways to Get Over the Fear of Praying Out Loud