5 Reasons to Sing Your Prayers
This is an amazing tool that has helped to strengthen my prayer life like nothing else. Since much of the church is admittedly prayer-less, I wanted to share this tool that seems not very well known. I used to write my prayers which I also highly recommend as it also has many benefits. I was introduced to sung prayer by IHOP-KC. They both pray in intercession and in meditation and worship. They have 2 hour sets that are called “worship with the word” where singers take scripture and make it their own singing it back to God. This is mainly what I do. But sometimes I will also just sing a prayer from my heart and let it turn into a song. There’s a beautiful melding of these two that happens where my own words become also words from scripture. Here are my 5 reasons to sing your prayers.
…be filled with the Spirit, (by) speaking to one another in psalms and hymns
and SPIRITUAL SONGS, SINGING AND MAKING MELODY IN YOUR HEART to the Lord…(Eph. 5:18-19)
*I will also begin posting some of my own sung prayers from my prayer times in later posts. This is a rather intimate and vulnerable, but I hope that it will benefit others in how to begin the practice of singing prayer.*
Let the WORD OF CHRIST dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and
admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and SPIRITUAL SONGS, SINGING WITH GRACE IN YOUR HEARTS to the Lord. (Col. 3:16)
1. You can pray longer and enjoy it. Singing your prayers is a way to make long prayer not only tolerable but enjoyable. I could make up a chorus or verse from scripture and sing it for an hour. For some reason, singing is much more pleasurable than speaking prayers.
2. Repetition is easy and doesn’t feel weird. I’ve heard of old saints repeating 3 or 5 word prayers over and over all day long “Forgive me, Lord, a sinner.” for example. I’ve tried this as I do feel there is a benefit to repeated prayers, but it just feels unnatural. When you sing your prayers, you may make up a chorus that goes with the melody like “God, tell me you love me again. Tell me you want me again. Awaken love.” It feels easy and natural to sing this chorus over and over to the melody.
3. It makes your prayers scriptural. There is definitely power in using the word and communicating it back to God. When you pray-sing the Psalms, you are often praying the very prayers of this amazing man after God’s own heart, David. (And think of that-He also sung his prayers!). You can use nearly any verse out of God’s Word and turn it into beautiful dialogue between you and God. It also gives you a scriptural vocabulary for communicating with God and others.
4. Music gets in deeper to the soul. You know there is just something about music. A good song will penetrate your heart and move your emotions. When you sing your prayers, you are escorted to a deeper place with God and feel His words resonating within you.
5. Singing prayer is a great way to “pray without ceasing”. Since I find it enjoyable, I use most of my time to make up scriptural song-prayers to God–on walks, car rides… And a lot of the times, the choruses will stick with me throughout the day while I’m washing dishes or changing diapers.
These are just a few reasons. I could probably give you 5 more easily. Below are a couple instrumentals and links where you can purchase them that can make it much easier than acapella.
International House of Prayer – Prayer Room: Listen to archives of “Worship with the Word” sets to hear how IHOP’s singers put singing prayer into practice.
24/7 Albums by the Hendricksons: These are my two greatest resources. The only downside is you have to buy the cds and have them mailed to you, but sooo worth it. Singing prayer was much more difficult before I had these. I will try to put samples of these albums on my site in the future.