When I see 11:18 on the clock, it’s my cue to pray for my marriage.
Whether it’s morning or night, I pray blessings on my marriage at 11:18, because my husband and I were married on November 18.
For years, I’ve used the clock as a reminder to pray. I use corresponding dates with the times and pray over the one tied to that number in my mind.
My husband and I have been married for 18 years. Most of those years have been full of challenges. Many times, when I saw 11:18 on the face of my microwave or stove clock, I didn’t want to pray.
When I saw 11:18 staring back at me from the radio in my van, I sometimes stubbornly ignored it. Looking at 11:18 p.m. on my bedside clock display, I often wanted to block it out.
But 11:18 is a reminder of the vows I made. The promises I made to my husband and to God. That date/time becomes my reminder that I can’t fulfill those vows on my own power. I must tether myself to God in prayer to stay faithful to my commitment.
How to Pray More Effective Prayers for My Family
The more often I prayed the 11:18 prayer, the more compassionate I became to my husband.
When you are praying regularly for someone you love, the Holy Spirit works on your heart. You can’t hold grudges as strongly when you’re praying blessings on a particular person. You must loosen your grip on past hurts when you pray for a blessed future, again and again. The 11:18 prayer worked to soften my heart, whether I was hungry for lunch or looking for sleep.
The time of 11:18 now symbolizes hope for me. When I consider the hundreds of times I’ve prayed over our marriage at those times of day, I am encouraged. God heard every prayer, whether it was uttered in resignation or joy. God has shaped me over the years every time I offered an 11:18 prayer, and of course, prayers for our marriage at any other time of day.
Since the 11:18 prayer worked so well for me, I started using it for other relationships.
Here are three ways to pray more effective prayers for my family and yours:
First… I remembered the times of day my children were born and pray for them every time the clock turns to those times.
I had one baby at night, one in the morning, and one in the afternoon. The clock keeps me praying all day for my children!
Second… I also use the clock to pray for my children’s birthdays.
Their corresponding month and day show up in the clock twice daily, and those times are my cues to say another quick prayer.
Third… When I receive prayer requests from friends and family, I often ask them to name a specific time.
I write the time down in my planner and say a prayer for them when they are headed into a tough meeting or facing surgery. They always say they felt my prayers as they went into their trial, so I’ve learned that a clock is a great tool for lifting others up in prayer.
I don’t always have time to pray a long prayer when the clock turns to a specific time.
Short prayers are perfectly suited for clock-based prayer. I sometimes simply say, “God, please bless ____” when the time comes.
Other times, I offer a few more specific sentences, then go about my day.
The clock is a wonderful reminder to “pray without ceasing,” as Paul tells us to do in 1 Thessalonians 5:17 KJV. You probably look at the clock dozens of times every day.
Why not use it to grow your prayer life and bless your relationships at the same time?
To start using the clock as a call to prayer, simply choose one day/time to remember.
At most, you’ll be praying twice daily, in the morning and night. Establish a regular habit of praying for that one person before you add others in, so you don’t get overwhelmed. Ask God to soften your heart toward the person for whom you are praying and watch how quickly God will help your attitudes change.Ask God to soften your heart toward the person for whom you are praying and watch how quickly God will help your attitudes change. Click To Tweet
Faithful prayers on the clock can improve your relationships in many ways.
They can establish a heart connection between you and your loved one, even if you are estranged.
Indeed, they can help you remember happier times (like a wedding or birth) and have faith that the future will be brighter. They can make your relationships more enjoyable because you are putting more effort into thinking of your loved one and assuming the best about them.
Of course, prayer on the clock also improves your relationship with God.
You will become more like him as you start praying blessings upon your relationships, especially relationships that may be strained.
Your faithfulness will grow; that’s a fruit of the Spirit which God wants to bear through you. You will be entering God’s presence more often in regular prayer, which will decrease your stress and increase your peace.
You will become more like God as you start praying blessings upon your relationships, especially relationships that may be strained. Click To Tweet
Getting started costs nothing but a few minutes of your time.
You can even plug a reminder in your phone to ding or buzz each time the clock shows your special date or time. In this simple way, you can improve your relationships with both God and others.
You can learn how to pray more effective prayers for your family.
About the Author:
Sarah Geringer writes about Finding Peace in God’s Word at sarahgeringer.com and is the author of three self-published books.
Her book on Christian meditation will be published by Leafwood in late 2019.
She lives in her beloved home state of Missouri with her husband and three children, right in the heart of prime viewing for the Great Eclipses of 2017 and 2024.
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How to Pray More Effective Prayers for My Family (and yours)