Praying in front of others can be stressful to say the least. As a pastor of a church, I pray often in public and find myself encouraging others to be comfortable praying in front of others as well. Follow these few simple steps to finding some comfort and ease when asked to pray in public.
BE COMFORTABLE PRAYING IN PRIVATE: The first step to praying in public is learning to pray in private. If you aren't comfortable with what you say and how you say your prayers when no one else is listening, you will never be comfortable praying when even just one more set of ears is present. Biblically speaking, prayer is much more a private practice than public anyway.
REMEMBER WHO YOU ARE TALKING TO: Whether in public or private, the true audience of our prayer life is God. I remind myself that, when I pray in front of others, I am not talking to them but to God. Prayer is in it's most basic definition a conversation with God, so push those other listening ears out of your mind and concentrate only on the true audience of your prayer.
PRAY OUT LOUD IN PRIVATE: Try praying out loud in private just so that you get used to hearing your own voice when it comes to prayer. This is how public speakers, preachers and others get used to hearing their own voices for lectures, sermons and other presentations. You can even tape yourself, so that you can play it back and get comfortable with the sound and the tone of your voice.
ASK GOD FOR HELP: Most likely you believe in the power of prayer if you are a praying person, so why not go to God in prayer for the encouragement and peace that you need when offered the opportunity to pray in front of others.
Items you will need
- a personal prayer life
- some encouragement
- Let this relieve some of your fears. Most people are not likely to criticize prayers that they hear from others.
- Some may feel that the realization of God as our true audience in prayer is more frightening that praying in front of an audience of our peers. You don't have to be scared to pray. God wants you to come to Him just as you are.