Saturday, May 15, 2010

Who's Praying?

The Evangelical Alliance have collected some info from various surveys on prayer, which you can find here. Given that 'wandering thoughts' afflicts 80% of people who try to pray, so it sounds like I'm in good company. More concerning is the finding that 1/4 of ministers spend less than half an hour a week in prayer. I'm impressed by those who pray for half an hour or more a day and wish I was one of them.


  1. "1/4 of ministers spend less than half an hour a week in prayer"

    Well, there are funerals, baptism visits, sermons on the power of prayer to prepare...

  2. I too wish I was one of half hour plus pople and am challenged by a whole lot of what the survey reveals. I wonder what to make of the figure that well under 50% of respondents pray for their church leaders and the work of the church (6th and 7th on the list) and that only a third are praying for others to come to faith? What might happen if more of us pushed these people further up our prayer priorities?

  3. I guess I have a couple of thoughts on the 'half an hour a day' issue.

    First, if it wasn't for (1) the daily office and (2) prayer walking, I'd have difficulty sustaining that too. But both those ways of praying help me pray for longer than I could otherwise. It takes about 25 minutes to walk around the perimeter of our local common - and I find that when I'm doing that, for some reason it's not hard to stay in prayer all way around. Likewise, the balance between set prayers, meditation on lectionary readings, and free prayer in the daily office is a real help to sustained prayer for me.

    But second, given that the Lord's Prayer is rather short, perhaps length isn't as important as some of us think!

  4. I would also recommend praying when walking. If you can find a reasonably quiet route that you follow every day you can focus better. I pray aloud when there is no one around - that helps too.