Enjoying a deep, fulfilling relationship with God involves open two-way communication. God has, in the Bible, opened His heart to man. It can be our greatest joy to get to know Him by reading His self-revelation. However, this is one-sided. God also desires that we are open with Him and speak to Him of our hearts’ deepest joys, ambitions, and interests.
God is truly there, and He is a personal God who carefully listens to us as we speak to Him. Prayer, therefore, should characterise every believer. It should not be restricted to special occasions. Just as a true friend is available to us when we call upon him for help, so the Lord is always there for us. However, friendship is not strengthened simply by calling on a friend when you are in trouble. Friendship demands time spent in each other’s company focusing upon shared interests, communicating, and building confidence.
Scheduling time to pray every day, and tying this in with your Bible reading will deeply enrich your relationship with the Lord.
The following plan has been very helpful to me. Before praying, read the Bible and jot down some truth about God/Christ, and some practical lessons. Then follow your Bible reading with prayer. I use a well-known structure: Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, Supplication (A.C.T.S).
Speak to God about what you have just learned of Him from the Bible. This will keep your adoration fresh. Each morning brings something new to appreciate.
Acknowledge before God how you have not lived up to what you have learned of His character. Confess how you have not fulfilled the practical lessons of the passage.
This becomes more general. Think of at least one blessing in life and thank God, the ultimate Giver of every good gift, for it.
Finally turn to specific prayer for yourself, your family, your friends, your local church, etc.
This format has been very helpful to me. We can “come boldly to the throne of grace” at any time to adore Him, to confess our sins, to thank Him, and to pray for specific matters. However, scheduling time with God shows that you are serious about your relationship with Him.