“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God” (Philippians 4: 6).

Prayer could be a very interesting encounter. It can sometimes be very difficult, dry and uninteresting. It is made worse when what we have been praying for does not seem to come through. Prayer is a journey. It needs perseverance and faithfulness. Many saints, monks and hermits would share the same experiences about prayers. With the hope that this helps us, I like to share with you what I call the 4 Ps of prayer:

Present – We need to be conscious of the fact that God is ever present – He is Omnipresent. He is present in all circumstances of our lives. Jesus says: “Your Father in heaven knows all your needs before you even ask.”

Promises – The Bible is flooded with different promises that God has made to us His dear children. Do you realise there are more than 6, 500 promises in the Bible? These promises are for us to claim in our prayers. Pray in the promise; believe that God cannot lie and that He will do what He said He would do.

Prayer – Then get down to pray. Prayer is a relationship, a dialogue, a friendly encounter, a lifting up of our hearts and minds to God, the Almighty in thanksgiving, contrition, intercession, petition and more. As Christians we need to pray without ceasing.

Patience – Remember God is neither a magician nor some force that we can command or control. He is Almighty and all-knowing. He knows our needs and more than that He knows the best times for us to have what we asked. He will surely answer our prayers – but at His time. So we must develop the attitude of positive patience after we have prayed.