Teach your group to pray


One of the best gifts you can give your group is inviting them to become people of prayer.  Don't assume that anyone in your group (including the leader) is an expert on prayer, even if they have gone to church for years.


Creative ideas to build excitement for prayer in your group:


            Split into smaller groups for your prayer time.  This gives more people a greater opportunity to be involved in prayer.  You could invite spouses or families to be prayer circles.


            Say an "organ prayer" (uncle Lou's liver, grandma's cancer) at the beginning of your meeting and a spiritual focus prayer at the end.


            Keep a prayer journal of requests each week and go back every six months to see how God has answered.


            Model conversational prayer

-        Not a formal, stiff prayer - "Father, thou knowest we hast a multitude of burdens  and molestations and we beseech thee to come hither to our aid..."

-        Talk to God as though He's part of the group and understands our language - "God, please take care of our friend Susan because you know what a hard time she's having at work..."


Ask for volunteers to pray.


Call on two people to pray and then the leader closes the prayer.


The leader leads the group to "Complete the sentence" in a chain prayer.  This could be a sentence like, "I want to thank you for _____," or "God, would you help with _____?"  The leader lets the group know that anyone who prefers to pray silently may squeeze the hand of the next person or say "Amen" to indicate he has finished his prayer.


The group prays conversationally using this method: A request is shared and the group spends time praying "sentence prayers" about that specific request before moving on the next concern.