Prayer is for everyone - it doesn't need any qualifications or special words, it's just talking to God about the things that matter most to us.
Often we find ourselves praying most intensely at times of crisis, asking God for his help and intervention. But we can pray anywhere at any time.
To start to pray, find somewhere where you won't be distracted and start to talk to God - either silently in your head, or out loud. If it's not something you have done before, it might feel strange, but God is listening, and he doesn't mind if you stumble or are hesitant.
It can help to follow a simple structure, and one ancient pattern is to start by thanking God for everything good in your life, then to say sorry for anything you know you have got wrong recently and then to ask God for anything you need. This is an easy pattern to remember; Thank you, Sorry, Please, and can help give shape to your prayer.
Praying with the bible is also helpful, and the Psalms are a good place to start - they are ancient conversations between the writer and God, and they touch on our deepest experiences and emotions. Try reading Psalm 63
if you want to thank God for being in your life, Psalm 139
if you need reminding of God's love and care or Psalm 51
if you feel you've messed things up.
Another simple daily prayer is to spend a few minutes at the end of the day going through everything that has happened, thanking God for all that was good, and offering him anything that was difficult.
And there are lots of other different ways to pray, and if it would be helpful to meet someone to talk about prayer or to pray together, please get in touch with Revd Hugh.
There are also excellent resources online, including this on the Rejesus
site, which gives a regular daily prayer for morning, midday and evening. If it helps you to use written prayers for different occasions, this site
has a prayers from the Church of England for specific situations. Or, if you like Twitter, these Twitturgies
, are beautiful, short, Scriptural prayers which can help.
And prayer is there at the heart of all our services, which you can find out more about here