Prayer can’t be considered a magic formula for attaining what we want, nor is it limited to “holy” individuals, particular times, or locations. Prayer is a kind of communication with God. Christians have a firm belief that God made everything and everyone for them to have a relationship with God and that He desires to hear from every individual as often or regularly as possible.
We have the opportunity to communicate with God in the same way we can communicate with our relatives and loved ones. You don’t even have to be Christian to participate. Many people have encountered God because they, with an open heart, called upon Him.
Why You Should Pray
We have a variety of reasons to pray. Praising and thanking the Lord for blessing us with all we have, begging God to help us and lead us to a better path, or confessing our sins and seeking forgiveness are examples. Alternatively, we may wish to tell God what’s on our minds.
Paul advises us to make our requests and wants known to God in the Book of Philippians. Jesus also prayed frequently with devotion. Christians believe it’s equally necessary to pray regularly as Jesus’ followers.
When Do Christians Pray?
The practice of seven scheduled prayer times has been preached since the early church. Hippolytus taught Christians the “seven times a day” prayer “on awakening, bedtime, midnight, the lighting of the evening lamp” as well as “the 3rd, 6th and 9th, hours related with Passion of the Christ” according to Traditions of the Apostolic. On the Lord’s Day, Christians visited two liturgies, one in the morning and one in the evening, with the aim of Scripture reading and celebrating the Holy Communion.
During the remaining parts of the week, Christians gathered every day at church for morning and evening prayers (called lauds and vespers, respectively) while praying at other scheduled times individually. Christian monastics eventually came together to pray at all the prescribed hours as a community. This tradition of seven scheduled prayer periods was carried out while standing or in a prostration position. This is still practiced in several Christian churches today, particularly in Oriental Christianity.
In preparation for Jesus’ second coming, followers of the Oriental Orthodox Church pray at the canonical hours while facing eastward, seven times a day. The prophet David used to pray seven times a day to God, and this is where the roots of this Christian practice arise from.
Clergy and monastics primarily observed this practice in Eastern Orthodox and Western Christianity. The Catholic Church now urges the laity to pray according to the Liturgy hours. In the Methodist tradition, praying at the canonical hours has been highlighted as an “important discipline” in being one of Jesus’ disciples.
Many Christians have traditionally put a Christian cross on their homes’ eastern walls, which they turn towards during their prayer times. Before observing their prayers, Oriental Protestant Christians and Orthodox Christians wash their hands and faces and clean their feet. They do so to present themselves in the best light possible. Shoes are removed so that it is known that a person is worshipping before the Lord. While praying, women of these Christian groups and several others are expected to wear a Christian head covering.
Best Times To Pray
The Bible doesn’t say what is the optimum time for praying. On the other hand, many passages contain stories of biblical figures that prayed at certain times and obtained outcomes from God.
The prophet Daniel prayed three times a day (Daniel 6:10). King David prayed three times a day: in the morning, noon and nighttime. He would sometimes get up early and pray for some hours before daylight.
When David felt the weight of life’s difficulties and tribulations crushing down on him, he cried and called upon God at any hour, whether it was night or day. Before choosing 12 men to follow him, Jesus prayed all night to his Father on the night of His arrest. The early church was dedicated to frequent prayers (Acts 2:42).
Here are several situations when Disciples of Christ have made it a habit to pray, based on scriptural examples and our daily personal needs:
- When you first wake up in the morning
- Blessing a meal before you eat
- Pray for luck and safety on your journey
- Pray for your friends
- Pray before going to bed
- When you or someone you love is sick
- Make a prayer for your family’s safety
- Pray for those who want to hurt you
- Pray when you’re feeling down
- Pray when you feel gratuitous
- Intercede for others by praying
- Pray before making any significant changes in your life
The optimum moment to pray is whenever you feel compelled to do so. Also, keep in mind that praying is nothing more than communication with God. You don’t have to ask for anything while you pray. You can show gratitude to the Lord for who He is and all that he has done for you.
Some people prefer to offer prayers while following pre-written material available in various formats. Funerals, marriages, baptism and sharing of wine and bread are occasions where formal prayers, such as the Lord’s prayers, are utilized. These vary by denomination, although they frequently have some themes in common.
Answers to Prayers
When we pray, it’s tempting to believe that God will grant us all that we ask for, especially if it appears to be a good thing. As a result, it’s aggravating when the Lord doesn’t respond or seems as if He has said no. We must remember that God is not a machine but our Heavenly Father who desires the best for us.
Our Final Thoughts
With the help of this post, we hope we have been able to answer troubling questions such as when do Christians pray? What time is optimum for us? No matter what time you deem fit for your prayers, always remember that God is listening to you, and He will always answer when the timing is right.