How to Pray Effectively

Communication Etiquette with the Commanding Officer

Proper prayer makes the difference between getting answers and being deceived.

As a soldier on the front lines, communicating with your Commanding Officer is key, and getting His response is even more important. When He responds, one of the ways to implement His commands and desires is by praying them into reality. Therefore, prayer is not to be done carelessly or ignorantly. It is one of the four ‘pillars’ that the early church ‘continued steadfastly’ in (see Acts 2:42).

The disciples asked Jesus to teach them how to pray. We need to learn how to pray. In this Standard Operating Procedure (SOP), we will explore the art of effective prayer.

1.    What Is Prayer? #

Prayer is a weapon of warfare by which we communicate with the Lord and agree with Him on different matters. Jesus prayed, “Your will be done on earth, as it is done in heaven”. We are to seek God’s will and establish it on earth.

In fact, a proper rendition of Matthew 18:18 is, “Whatsoever things have been bound in heaven, be bound on earth, whatsoever things are loosed in heaven, be loosed on earth.” Therefore, having discerned God’s will is, we are to effect the same on earth.

For example, people are healthy in heaven, and the Lord wants people to be well on earth, but there has to be someone that ‘pulls down’ that wellness to the sick. Now, the experience on earth may not be as perfect in this age because we’re still limited by our bodies and the darkness of this world. But He wants us to partake in some of it, and through prayer, we can enter into what He has made available.

Ephesians 6:18 includes prayer as part of our spiritual armor; “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions, with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints.” The Scriptures also say that we are to watch and pray so that we will not fall into temptation (Matthew 26:41). Prayer and alertness go hand in hand; every soldier must stay on guard!

  1. Why Should You Pray? #

  • Jesus commanded us to pray (Luke 18:1) and He exemplified a life of proper communication with the Father (Matt 14:23, 26:36, Luke 6:12).
  • We are to pray so that we will not fall into temptation (Matt 26:41, Luke 21:36)
  • We are to pray because God hears and is near to us when we pray (Deut 4:7, Matt 7:7. Jer 29:12, Psa 65:5, 86:7, 91:15, 102:17, Job 22:27, Jer 33:3, Psa 65:2)
  • We pray to avert impending doom (Deut 9:26)
  • We pray to receive forgiveness (1 Kgs 8:30)
  • We pray to receive victory in battle (1 Kgs 8:44, Isa 37:15-36)
  • We pray to enquire and seek God’s will (Psa 27:4, 8, Eccl 5:1-2, Exo 18:15, 1 Chron 16:15, 2 Chron 7:14)
  • We pray so that our faith will not fail (Luke 22:31)
  • We pray to obtain mercy and grace Heb 4:16
  • We pray for God’s intervention 1 Kgs 17:19-22, 18:36-37
  1. What Do You Need to Pray Effectively? #

  • Holy hands, without wrath and doubt (1 Tim 2:8)
  • Humility (1 Chron 7:14, Luke 18:9-14)
  • Repentance (Acts 8:22)
  • Reliance on the Spirit of God (Rom 8:26); the ability to pray in the Spirit (Eph 6:18) and in your understanding (1 Cor 14:15, Jude 1:20)
  • Thanksgiving (Col 1:3, Phil 4:6)
  • The word of God (Hos 14:2, 1 Chron 17:25)
  • Knowledge of God’s will (1 John 5:14-15, John 15:7); pray for things more than you pray against things (Matt 6, 11, Eph 1:17-19, 3:16-20, Col1:9-12)
  • Faith and obedience (Matt 9:27-30, 21:21-22, Mark 11:22-24, Heb 10:22, Heb 11:6, James 1:5-8, 5:18)
  • Joy (Phil 1:4, 1 Thes 5:16-18)
  • A sober and clear mind (1 Pet 4:7)
  1. How Should You Pray? #


Matthew 5:9-15 MKJV

  • Therefore pray in this way: Our Father, who is in Heaven, Hallowed be Your name.

Begin by honouring the Lord: praising Him, worshipping Him, regarding Him as holy.

  • YOUR KINGDOM COME, YOUR WILL BE DONE, on earth as it is in Heaven.

Seek first His Kingdom, His will.

  • Give us this day our daily bread;

Ask Him to provide your present needs.

(12)  and forgive us our debts as we also forgive our debtors.

Forgive others, and ask for forgiveness for your sins.

(13) And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil. For Yours is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.

Ask Him to lead you in paths of righteousness and preserve you from evil.

(14)  For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you;

(15)  but if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

Forgive those who have offended you.



See Ephesians 1:15-21, Colossians 1:9-12, Ephesians 3:16-19

  1. How Not to Pray! #

  • Distractedly (Mark 13:33, 1 Pet 4:7)
  • To show off (Matt 6:5)
  • Anxiously (Phil 4:6)
  • With presumptions and idols in your heart (Eze 14:3-10)
  • With double-mindedness (James 1:6-8)
  • Without forgiving (Matt 6:12-15, Mark 11:25)
  • Placing demands and commanding God (Isa 45:11, Eph 6:18, Heb 5:7)
  1. Who Should Pray? #

  • The righteous (James 5:16, 1 Pet 3:12, Psa 32:6)
  • The saints (Rev 8:3-4)
  • The afflicted (James 5:13)
  • Leaders (Num 21:7, 1 Sam 12:19, 23)
  1. Who Should You Pray For? #

  • Those who persecute you (Matt 5:45, Luke 6:28)
  • For the Saints (Eph 6:18, John 17:9, 20)
  • Those on the frontlines (1 Thes 5:25)
  • The sick (James 5:14)
  • Leaders (Ezra 6:10)
  • Your country/territory (Psa 122:6)
  • The Remnant (Jer 42:2)
  1. How Often Should We Pray? #

1 Thessalonians 5:17-18 MKJV

(17)  Pray without ceasing.

(18)  In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.

NOTE: This does not mean that every breathing moment of our lives should be spent talking to God about one matter or the other – if you were praying all the time, when would you evangelise or listen to God’s word? Rather, this means that we should not stop praying.

  1. What are the Types of Prayer? #

  • Supplications/Prayers:

(See Eph 6:18, 1 Tim 2:3-4, Phil 4:6)

Greek: δέησις deēsis

Thayer Definition:

1) need, indigence, want, privation, penury

2) a seeking, asking, entreating, entreaty to God or to man.

Hebrew: תּחנּה techinnâh.

BDB Definition:

1) favour, supplication, supplication for favour

1a) favour

1b) supplication for favour.

The root word translated ‘prayer’ is the generic word for prayer in general, ‘proseuche’.

These condiments of prayer correspond to the spices, stacte and onycha.

Stacte signified a fragrant distillation from some plant; some think it is storax (from the storer tree), while others see it as distilled myrrh dropping from the tree of its own accord (without any incision on the bark).

Onycha refers to the horny operculum found in certain sea creatures abundant in the red sea, which when burnt emits a strong musky odor.

All the supplications/petitions/requests that we present before God come under this form of prayer.

Philippians 4:6-7 NIV

(6)  Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.

(7)  And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Anxiety may move us to pray, but we cannot remain anxious while presenting our petitions before the King. (Thanksgiving, another condiment of proper incense, takes care of our anxieties).



Greek: εὐχαριστία eucharistia.

Thayer Definition:

1) thankfulness

2) the giving of thanks.

The frankincense represents thanksgiving. It is the opposite of myrrh, which means bitter.  There should not be myrrh (bitterness), in our prayer and praise. Your incense must not comprise of complaints and murmuring; these are unpleasant to God.

Philippians 2:14-15, Philippians 4:6-7

If you are going to combine the four condiments of the incense and the four explanations given in 1 Timothy 2 from verse 1, you must have thanksgiving in your prayer concoction, or it is not acceptable incense to God.

Whenever people pray and make petitions asking God to help them, save them, deliver them, help them graduate, help them marry, or give them a job, and they don’t mix it in with thanksgiving for what God has already done continually, then, their incense is not the incense God desires.

There is always something to give thanks for. Give thanks always, in all things. Reject every temptation to complain and murmur.

1 Thessalonians 5:18, 1 Timothy 2:8, 1 Peter 4:7

  • Prayers of Agreement

Matthew 18:18-20

(18)  Verily I say unto you, whatsoever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

(19)  Again I say unto you, That if two of you shall agree on earth concerning anything that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of my Father who is in heaven.

(20)  For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.

9b. What Are the Keys to Effective Supplication? #

  1. Submit yourself to God.

Hebrews 5:7 NIV

During the days of Jesus’ life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission.

Luke 22:39-45 NIV

(39)  Jesus went out as usual to the Mount of Olives, and his disciples followed him.

(40)  On reaching the place, he said to them, “Pray that you will not fall into temptation.”

(41)  He withdrew about a stone’s throw beyond them, knelt down and prayed,

(42)  “Father, if you are willing, take this cup from me; yet not my will, but yours be done.”

(43)  An angel from heaven appeared to him and strengthened him.

(44) And being in anguish, he prayed more earnestly, and his sweat was like drops of blood falling to the ground.

We saw earlier how Jesus taught His disciples to pray: “Let Your will be done. Let Your kingdom come.” God hears the prayers of those who ask that His will be done. This ‘reverent submission’ demonstrated in prayer (and in action) attracts God’s favour.

James 4:6-7 NIV

  • But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: God opposes the proud and gives grace to the humble.
  • Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

Psa 37:4  Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.

  1. Make your requests according to the leading of the Spirit and the word of God.

Psalms 143:10 BBE

(10)  Give me teaching so that I may do your pleasure; for you are my God: let your good Spirit be my guide into the land of righteousness.

We saw earlier the importance of praying according to the word of God, but specific, strategic leadings in prayer (and all spiritual warfare) come from the Spirit. We must be led by the Spirit when making requests, because the Spirit knows the mind of the King, and teaches us how to pray.

Romans 8:26 NIV

(26)In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.

(27) And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints in accordance with God’s will.

Esther 2:15-17 MKJV

(15)  And when the turn of Esther, the daughter of Abihail the uncle of Mordecai who had taken her for his daughter, had come to go in to the king, she asked nothing but what was chosen by Hegai the king’s officer, the keeper of the women. And Esther had favor in the sight of all who looked on her.

(16)  And Esther was taken to King Ahasuerus into his royal house in the tenth month, which is the month Tebeth, in the seventh year of his reign.

(17)  And the king loved Esther above all the women, and she rose in grace and favor in his sight more than all the virgins. And he set the royal crown on her head, and made her queen instead of Vashti.

Esther 7:2-3 NIV

(2)  and as they were drinking wine on that second day, the king again asked, “Queen Esther, what is your petition? It will be given you. What is your request? Even up to half the kingdom, it will be granted.”

(3)  Then Queen Esther answered, “If I have found favor with you, O king, and if it pleases your majesty, grant me my life–this is my petition. And spare my people–this is my request.

  1. What Should We Pray About? #


  1. What Should We Pray For? #

  • Boldness (Eph 6:19, Col 4:4)
  • Opportunities to share the gospel (Col 4:3)
  • The spread of the gospel (2 Thes 3:1, Matt 9:38)
  • Deliverance (Rom 15:31, 2 Thes 3:2, Num 21:7, 12, 2 Chron 6:34-35)
  • Healing (James 5:16)
  • Forgiveness of sin (1 John 5:16, 1 Kgs 8:30)
  • Spiritual enlightenment/eyes to see (Eph 1:8, Eph 3:16-19, Phil 1:9-10)
  • The coming of God’s Kingdom (Luke 11:2)
  1. What Hinders Answers To Prayer? #

  • Sin (Jer 7:15-19)
  • Unforgiveness (Matt 6:12, 15)
  • Pride and self righteousness (Luke 18:10-14)
  • Idols in your heart (Eze 14:3)
  • Conclusion #

Prayer can be much more enjoyable and effective when we do it right. And we will see more answers to our prayers as we draw near to God with single hearts, seeking out his will alone.

Further Reading/Other Resources



  • Sun. Oct , 30 2022 ~SW: Prayer and Warfare: Conversation, Spectacle, or Bluster? || Ita Udoh || GLH

  • The True Definition of Prayer || Ita Udoh – YouTube

  • Is Prayer the Master Key: How to Have a Balanced Prayer Life?

  • Fri Aug 05, 2022 ~ SW ~ How to Provoke Answers from Heaven | Ita Udoh | God’s Lighthouse

  • Victories Without Much Praying?

  • How to Become Powerful In the Spirit Realm

  • Sun Oct 31, 2021~ [1st Serv] |How to Defeat the Enemy | Ita Udoh | God’s Lighthouse

  • The Job of Watchmen: Why You Need them in Your Life

  • Fri Aug 05, 2022 ~ SW ~ How to Provoke Answers From Heaven | Ita Udoh | God’s Lighthouse

Sun Jan 16, 2022 [1st Serv]| Disciples vs The Son of Perdition| God’s Lighthouse Google Drive Page

  • Effective Prayer Strategy: How to get answers to your prayers.

Sat Jan 8, 2022| Righteous Government: Prophetic Parallels from Isaiah 32| God’s Lighthouse Google Drive Page

  • Why does it seem my prayers are not answered?

Sun, Jan 2, 2022|| Heavenly Warfare: Recovering Gifts|| God’s Lighthouse Google Drive Page

  • Impatience: Why many are never positioned properly to receive answers to their prayers.

Sun, Dec.12, 2021|| Dark Days Looming || God’s Lighthouse Telegram Channel

  • What are the ethics and components of effective prayer? (Message – 46 MB) (Testimonies – 20.8MB)

Sun, Dec 5, 2021 || How to Encounter God || God’s Lighthouse Telegram Channel

  • Declarations vs Inquiry: Which is the acceptable approach to our God and King?
  • Why people are many times disappointed when they come to God in prayer. (Message – 52.4 MB) (Testimonies – 12 MB)

Prayer and Warfare: Conversation, Spectacle, or Bluster?

Wed, Oct 12, 2022 || Discipleship: Prayer, Callings & Preparation for the Antichrist


Fri, Aug 19, 2022||House of Prayer or Den of Thieves –The Difference

Sun, Jul 10, 2022 || Fully Effective Prayer

Sun Apr 24, 2022 [Morning] || Proper Time and Procedure: Church Conduct|| God’s Lighthouse Telegram Channel || God’s Lighthouse Google Drive Page

Sun, Apr 17, 2022 [Morning] ||Proper Time and Procedure: The creation model|| God’s Lighthouse Google Drive Page

Fri, Mar 4, 2022 ||Righteousness: The Way to Victory || God’s Lighthouse Google Drive Page

Wed, Mar 4, 2022 || How to Speed Up Growth || God’s Lighthouse Google Drive Page

Wed, Feb. 16, 2022 ||Conquer or Be Conquered || God’s Lighthouse Google Drive Page


  • GAMKA: The Four Focuses of the Church (Prayer)

  • GAMKA: All Kinds of Prayer

  • GAMKA: All Kinds of Prayer Part 2

  • GAMKA: All Kinds of Prayer Part 3

  • GAMKA: Types of Prayer: Prayer of Supplication

  • GAMKA: Types of Prayer: Prayer of Intercession

  • GAMKA: Types of Prayer: Prayer of Thanksgiving

  • Thanksgiving: The Missing Link


  1. FRI 06 08 2021

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  1. FRI 01 10 2021

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  • We bless your name

  • I too am a warrior

  • Made for war

  • Teach our hands to war

  • Help Help

  • Pure sounds

  • Waves of the Spirit.



  • Don’t forget the Frankincense

  • Obedient Thanksgiving

  • Why Should I praise?


  • This Present Darkness and Piercing the Darkness by Frank Peretti
  • Ladies of Gold (Vol 1 – 3) by James Maloney
  • Needless Casualties of War by John Paul Jackson.

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