By   •   June 1, 2004   •   Topics:


How does one pray? I’ve never been taught how to say a personal prayer or really talk to God.


There is no formula to prayer—it is simply conversing with God. It is essentially talking with God as you would talk with an earthly parent who loves you and wants the best for you. God is your heavenly Father who loves you perfectly.

The ACTS model will be helpful to you as you learn how to pray. ACTS stands for Adoration, Confession, Thanksgiving, and Supplication.

• Adoration means worship. We encourage you to begin your time of prayer by adoring and praising God. Praise Him for who He is and for all that He has done for you. God delights in your praises!

• Confession, the next component, means agreeing with God about the things that you have done wrong. It’s a time to express sorrow about what you have said, thought, or done that is not pleasing to Him. Ask God to forgive you for these things, and then believe that He does so freely. When you confess your sins, you receive God’s cleansing and this helps to remove any barrier in your communication with Him (read 1 John 1:9).

• Thanksgiving basically means being thankful to God. Thank Him for His love, protection, and provision just to name a few things.

• Supplication is the final component, and this means praying for your needs and for the needs of others, such as friends, family, your pastor, missionaries, government leaders, and persecuted Christians around the world. You may want to pray for such things as God’s guidance, wisdom, and opportunities to serve.

Keep in mind that the ACTS model serves as a guide to help you, not a rigid formula to follow. There is no “canned” approach that you need to take; just talk from your heart. There are additional steps that will help. Set aside a specific time to pray each day.

Pick a quiet place where you can be alone with God. You will also find a special blessing if you begin your time by reading the Bible. Select a passage to read (download a Bible reading plan) and spend some time thinking about it deeply. Reflect on what God is impressing on your heart to you through the passage.

Ask God to help you apply what you are learning. God wants you to share your heart with Him, and He wants to share His heart with you—this can take place anytime, day or night!

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  1. Lala says:

    I am in a bible study and we were talking about praying. I said that I thank God for my needs and talk with him. A lady corrected me and said don’t thank him first, praise Him and then, thank Him.

    1. Nichole says:

      I’m sorry you were corrected. 😔

      Like it said above:

      “Keep in mind that the ACTS model serves as a guide to help you, not a rigid formula to follow. There is no “canned” approach that you need to take; just talk from your heart.”

  2. Roshan Akram says:

    Praise the Lord!
    Dear brother/sister, thank you for this advice.

  3. Susan Jordan says:

    Thanks for the help.

  4. Monica Mwangi says:

    Thanks, God be praised.

  5. Leon C Pierce says:

    Thank you so much for the clarity and recommended structure to help in visualizing how to proceed with prayer. In aging, my mine is not as sharp and quick as it was when I was younger. At that time, praying was very easy for me. Now the thoughts come slower in group and public prayer and it feels at times I may draw a blank (have no thoughts at all) due to forgetfulness and weaker thought recall though it is clearly not dementia. God bless you all.

  6. Tabata says:

    Thank you

  7. Charlatan Jones says:

    Thank you for showings me the Acts prayer and how I can use it through my walk with Christ. I really appreciate it. I don’t just want to know Christ physically, but spiritually as well. Again thank you and May God continue to bless you all for all you’re doing. Reaching people all over the world.

  8. Colleen says:

    Thank you