3 Tips to Feel Closer to Jesus While Praying

Right now almost every single one of us has something weighing heavy on our hearts that has you feeling anxiety, fear, worry. Maybe you are waiting for results of some medical tests. Maybe you are nervous about trying something new. Maybe there is a problem in your life and you are struggling with doubt in God and His ability to lead you to a solution.

As Christians, we are instructed to “Take it to the Lord in Prayer!” And I don’t know about you, but in the past there were many times after prayer I still wouldn’t feel better.

Was I a bad Christian? Would the lightning strike me down?

I recently discovered where the disconnect was between my absent minded prayers and the sense of comfort and confidence in Jesus I was longing to feel.

Friends, what I am about to tell you, I did just exactly 10 months ago and I cannot explain in words the feeling of love, peace and reassurance that washed over me. This awareness of his loving, close presence was so miraculous. It changed how I now take my prayers to the Lord.

And I cannot keep this to myself, so I share this with you in the hopes that you try something similar and experience the same closeness to God!

1. “Take it to the Lord in prayer”…by imagining your talking to your best friend.

When I would pray it was like I was down on Earth, in my cozy bed sending off my prayer up to the heavens. To make my relationship with Jesus more personal, and I know he is right by my side, I have “pillow talk” with Jesus.

If my best friend was laying next to me and she said, “girl, what’s on your mind?” My eyes wouldn’t be closed, I wouldn’t be kneeling.  I would be on my side, propped up on an elbow, with a pillow tucked under my arm.

Well, I imagine Jesus is saying, Katie honey, tell me everything! What is on your mind? (And yes, sometimes I will say that out loud).

And just as if I was talking to a trusted friend, I tell him! I am in that same position. I am looking at that empty side of my bed, and imagining Jesus is right there (I imagine him with long hair, loose fitting jeans, barefoot, and a cool T-shirt).

I tell him everything (out loud)- the crazy, irrational fears, my doubts, my feelings of loneliness, etc… He wants to hear it all! Unedited! And I am telling Him my hopes, my desires about the outcomes of which I am anxiously awaiting. I get it all out of my head. But it doesn’t stop there!

This next tip is THEE most important one.

2. Stick around to feel Jesus’ comfort

In the past I would say a prayer asking for peace and comfort, but I never stuck around to feel His comfort and love!

When I am done, talking (or crying) to Jesus, that’s when I close my eyes. I imagine Jesus scoots over next to me, puts my head in His lap and starts brushing back my hair with his fingers. Stay with me…. My mom used to do this to me (who am I kidding, I still make her do this) and it is so comforting. That’s why I imagine Jesus doing that. I allow myself to feel His love and comfort, and for me personally getting my head rubbed is comforting.

Just like a best friend offers words of encouragement, I try to imagine what Jesus would say while He has me in His embrace.

“Katie- girl, I love you SO much! I know exactly what is heavy on your heart. I have wonderful plans for your life. I have it all under control! Trust in my love for YOU, trust that I will guide you and get you through this anxious time.”

3.  Like George Michael sang, “Because I gotta have faith!”

You hear these words said over and over, because it needs to be said over and over. My mom and I need to hear this over and over. It is HAVE FAITH in God’s micro-management of your life! Even down to the little things you are concerned about, so is He.

And yet we doubt. Like my dad says, if you doubt you are in good company. David doubted God, so did Abraham, Paul, Peter, Thomas. God can handle it, but after you express your doubts, after you lament to God…  Know this: the same God who was faithful to his people in ancient times, this same God is faithful to YOU, _______ (insert your own name for emphasis).

Reflect on the following promise made by St.Paul and replace the words, “we” and “our” with “I” and “my.”

“We’ve been surrounded and battered by troubles, but we’re not demoralized; we’re not sure what to do, but we know that God knows what to do; we’ve been spiritually terrorized, but God hasn’t left our side; we’ve been thrown down, but we haven’t been broken.”  2 Corinthians 1:4 (The Message)

Tonight, shake things up during your prayer time! We would love to hear from you if you kept these prayer tips in mind! Did this help you? Leave us a reply!

4 thoughts on “3 Tips to Feel Closer to Jesus While Praying

  1. Katie, I love the visual of being propped up on one elbow talking to Jesus. That is how I talk to Jerry sometimes and Chris, too. I also like the idea of Jesus stroking my hair! Now THAT is up close and personal!

    I’m working on my Mind Weeds list. I wanted to call you on Friday because I had talked to my sister, Laura, and she mentioned my niece (Jenny) was in town and that she, my Mom and Jenny went to dinner together. My first thought was they didn’t want me and my mind started to go down the toilet with all the things wrong with me. I was able to stop my stinkin thinkin until I saw Laurie and asked about Jenny’s visit. She said Jenny was here for a conference and that literally she only saw her for about an hour for dinner. I don’t know why but being excluded from something family related makes me think that no one wants to be around me and it is some big family secret. I hate that feeling and would like to replace it with a mind blossom. Got any ideas?

    • I’m glad the visual helped! It sounds like you have that mind weed of “rejection.” A mind weed for me that can crop up out of nowhere and quickly take over your mind garden! I think most women struggle with this mind weed- I know I have ever since I was in middle school and hated the feeling of being left out and taking things so personally! We all want acceptance and to feel loved, and when we are “left out” it feels like rejection, we feel unworthy! The fact that you are aware of this “mind weed” and how it starts telling you lies about yourself is a great start! Also, you need to keep in mind what can Sue control and what CAN’T Sue control. You can’t make them include you, but what you DO have control over is your reactions, and thoughts when it happens. Think about all the people in your life that DO want to be around you! Re-focus on them, invite one of those people to dinner. Focus on the only person who loves you completely and unconditionally- Christ! Let me ask you, do you feel uplifted and loved when you are with them? If you aren’t, then it’s a blessing you were invited! If you do want to be around them think about this verse in Matthew 7:12, “Here is a simple rule of thumb guide for behavior: Ask yourself what you want people to do for you, then grab the initiative and do it for them.” So Sue, if you want to be included, don’t wait around to be asked- YOU do the asking. If they say no, don’t take it personal, just keep finding opportunities to invite your sister to spend with you!!

  2. I have to confess after I read your first 2 things to do for prayer I ran up to my room and had girl talk with the Lord. WOW…that really does work. Thanks!

    • Amy, I love that you actually tried it. Seriously, it absolutely has changed how I pray. It is so much more intimate! I KNOW I have connected to him and opened up my heart because I am filled with such peace and comfort.

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