Prayer Journal: Where Do I Start?

A prayer journal is something that will evolve over time, and each of ours will look different as we figure out what works best for us. I started out with the pretty spiral bound journals that you see in bookstores, but found out that they weren’t very practical for me. As prayers were answered and marked off the list, I would end up with gaps in my journal that drove me crazy. I know, it doesn’t take much to drive me crazy! But I have found that a small looseleaf binder works best for me. I add pages as I need them, and I can use dividers to keep things in order.

My best advice on getting started is… get started. Don’t get overwhelmed. Just get it all on paper, and figure out the best order as you go. Make a list of all the things you know to pray about. Start with your own family. What do you know of that needs God’s attention? Is someone sick? Stressed? Having a hard time emotionally, spiritually, financially? Are your children having a hard time in school? Does your relationship with your spouse function like it was designed by God? Move on to friends. Who has asked you to pray for them. Does your Sunday school class keep a prayer list? Write. It. Down. If you don’t write it down, you will forget you prayed over it. Then when God answers, you miss the victory because you are already on to the next thing.

Be as specific as possible. Instead of writing “Help Kate in school,” drill down to “How can I help Kate understand fractions better?” or “Lord, please restore Kate’s relationship with Jenny so that they are close friends again.” As you work to identify problems more specifically, you can then see progress much more clearly than if you just prayed a general prayer. When He provides you with the next move (Maybe you sense him urging you to invite Jenny and her mom to meet you at the park.) write it down, and DO IT!!! I know that sounds so simple, but I can’t tell you how many times I have sensed God’s leading during my prayer time, but have failed to follow through, or failed to write it down, and so forgotten what He said by the end of my prayer time. And then I wonder why it takes so long to see change.

Incorporate scripture into your journal and your prayers. I have been fortunate to have some spiritually strong women who taught me the beauty of praying God’s word back to Him. It is, after all, His will. When you see His promises in His word, you don’t have to question whether they are applicable to you (unless they were being promised to someone specific). When you are praying about someone’s health, look up scriptures that deal with healing or health. When you are looking for direction, look up scriptures dealing with God’s wisdom and revelation. When you are praying for your children’s lives, look up and incorporate scripture that deals with issues they might face. Write the scripture verses in your journal beside the prayer request it refers to. God will honor His word.

Don’t wait for problems to arise. Cover your loved ones in prayer even when things are going well. Pray against those things which MIGHT arise, were it not for the fact that you have prayed about it. Please note, this does not mean that you sit around imagining things that could happen and get yourself worked up into a worried frenzy about things. The purpose of praying for them is to release them into God’s hands, knowing that He loves them more than you ever could, and then you will have no reason to worry. Make sense?

If you need outside resources, don’t be afraid to use them. Some of my favorite books on prayer are by Stormie Omartian. I daily use Power of a Praying Wife (for use in praying for my husband), Power of a Praying Parent (for use in praying for my children), and I have just recently picked up Power of a Praying Woman (for use in praying for myself). I have uncovered many things that I never thought to cover in prayer from reading these books, and I use the prayers as a starting point, adding my own thoughts and verses as needed. I use them as an accompaniment to my journal, making notes and adding thoughts to the margins.

This post has ended up containing far more info than I originaly intended. However, as you can see, prayer is an area that I am passionate about. The people we love are too important to entrust their lives to randomness, luck or chance. We can play a vital part in ensuring things happen for our loved ones according to God’s perfect plan if we will cover them in prayer.

Questions about anything I have mentioned today? Just leave your comments or email me if it’s too personal.


  1. Thanks for this!!

  2. HisFireFly says

    "Don't wait for problems to arise. Cover your loved ones in prayer even when things are going well."

    Wise, wise words. God desires us to pray as much when things are going well as when there are trials!

  3. Chinwe Enigheno says

    This site is recommended to every woman especially the very busy career mothers so they are not carried away by so much activity and leave out the very important job of praying for your home & others. I am blessed.

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