I wanna be like Anne Couch.

on September 28, 2009 in Ze Bloggy Goodness with 15 comments by

I don’t know if this post is going to turn out the way it is turning out in my mind. But we’ll give it a shot.

After Mrs. Couch’s funeral last week, I decided that I want to be a different person.

There was a common theme in the words that people said at her funeral.

Mrs. Couch really prayed for people.

Let me tell you my thoughts on prayer. It has changed my life. I am convinced that the two main reasons I heart Nashville are because of God’s lovingkindness and the prayers of the people that love me. I also know, like KNOW, that I wouldn’t have finished my book in January without your prayers.

I have seen prayer change my life. I have seen prayer change other people’s lives. I have seen how prayer draws me closer to the heart of God. I’m a big believer in the power of prayer.

I’m also a big slacker. And a big over-sleeper. Which means I’m not a big pray-er.

But I’m going to be different.

I’ve really been pondering things since Wednesday. I’ve replayed conversations in my mind between myself and Mrs. Couch and honestly, many of them focused on prayer. There are some things that we both consistently prayed for, and those things were often what we spoke of.

And yet I look at my life and realize that I talk about prayer more than I pray.

[Dear reader who thinks AnnieBlogs is a perfect Christian, sorry.]

I’ve been listening to a series of the book of Proverbs by Mark Driscoll. And I have finished the series with this set of thoughts:

  1. I don’t know everything like I think I do.
  2. Other people do know everything about some things.
  3. I should ask people to tell me everything about their something.
  4. Because maybe part of wisdom is knowing that other people have wisdom that I need.

So I drove back to Nashville on Thursday and began to ask people how they pray. And what they pray for. And how in the name of everything sleepy-time they convince themselves to get up early to pray.

Because you know, there are people I want to pray for everyday. But I forget. And there are things that are deeply important to me, that I whine and complain about, but that I don’t pray about on a daily basis.

So after a full-on interrogation of wise folks around me, I have a plan. A praying plan.

Thanks to what I learned last week about Mrs. Couch and the life that she led, I don’t think I’ll ever be the same.

My prayer times, they are a changin’.

Tomorrow, I’m gonna show you my two part plan. I’ve titled it–

Seeing is Believing: The Attempt Of One Christian To Actually Remember To Pray Daily For The People And Things That Are Important To Her.

I think the subtitle is a tad long, but very informative.

15 comments

  1. ali
    posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 6:36 AM  |  reply

    With a toddler and six-wk old at home, getting up early is a joke. But like you, I have the best intentions. I’ve tried to use the middle-of-the-night feeding time as prayer time, but lately I’ve even failed at that.
    I’m looking forward to your next post – I could use some divine inspiration!

  2. posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 7:11 AM  |  reply

    I began a prayer journal back in the day. I would always list my prayer then go back and put the date and the answer to the prayer. It wasn’t always what I thought the answer would be but God was always faithful to answer in His time and in His way.

    That little notebook was such an inspiration for me. How amazing to see God at work at a glance.

    I stopped writing in my prayer journal. Why? I have no idea. I believe I’m going to start it up again. Thanks for the kick in the pants.

  3. Annabel
    posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 7:26 AM  |  reply

    Hey! Okay, so I somehow found your blog a few weeks. And I feel weird, like stalker-weird, if I keep reading your blog and never say anything, so…now I’m doing it! Plus, I have something to say about this!

    I’m a junior in college, and I’ve been trying to get a prayer habit down for the past two years. I don’t have a perfect Christian story either, and I have to pray for God 1) to remind to pray and 2)give me the want to pray. And of course, he would pick the early morning for our time to be together–which at first, was not fun.

    But! Hopefully, this can help. I’ve been in school since early August, not that I’ve prayed EVERY morning, and not that I’ve had great, heartfelt passionate prayers EVERY morning, but I do get up, even when I REALLY don’t want to and at least pray for the day. The key factors for my prayer time in the morning are coffee and shower. Collosians says devote myelf to prayer with an alert mind and thankful heart. That alert mind is not coming if I get out of the bed and immediately pray. Plus, I find that getting up early really sets my day in a positive motion.

    Okay, that was really longwinded, and probably really random. I can’t wait to read your prayer series! 🙂

  4. posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 10:30 AM  |  reply

    Looking forward to hearing your thoughts, I seriously struggle with prayer motivation!

  5. 79Leslie
    posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 11:32 AM  |  reply

    Thank you, Annie…this was just the kick-in-the-tush I needed. I am exactly the same way and to be honest, have been for most of my Christian life. Your honesty inspires…blessings to you!

    Leslie

  6. Tonya
    posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 11:51 AM  |  reply

    I can’t wait to read your prayer plan, annie! I struggle with prayer to. I always mean to do it and then other things get in the way. For me I seem to pray best before I go to bed not when I wake up, my mind just doesn’t work then. have you tried nighttime?

  7. posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 1:01 PM  |  reply

    a few tips/ things to consider:
    1. try it right after your bible study/ quiet time each day. your mind is already communicating with God.
    2. try writing it down/ typing it. i have a “dear God” folder on my Mac. this helps me stay focused and keeps me from list-making during prayer.
    3. when tired, just expand the Lord’s prayer (ie: our father who art in heaven, hallowed be your name [then insert names you like to use to identify him] your kingdom come [what you’re looking forward to about the kingdom/ people who need to understand/ become a part of the kingdom] your will be done [will for your life/ your obedience to it] on earth as it is in heaven [brokenness of the world vs. his will coming on earth as heaven] give us this day our daily bread [all the provisions you need and all those he’s given freely] etc….
    4. other brain-stimulating/ wake-up-not-yet-thinking-topics: you can ALWAYS make a list of what your thankful for; praising who he is and how he’s good, incorporate favorite scripture/ turn scripture into personal prayer; make a list of all the promises he’s given you and how it’s worked out; list all the times you thought your plan was better, but his will prevailed anyway, and… ummm blew your mind!; list of all the ways he’s really really showed up and thank him for each.

    just a few ideas from a creative writer who LOVES prayer 😉

  8. posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 1:05 PM  |  reply

    oh, and also, i forgot to include this above, but in our house we have two small dry-erase boards: one that contains a prayer of the day/ list of people to pray for continually throughout the day; and one that has verse of the day/ scripture that is either pertinent to us or pertinent to someone we’re praying for or pertinent to speaking truth into a circumstance we’re floundering in/ etc. they are visual reminders of where your brain should be periodically throughout the day AND if you need help getting started/ getting organized/ not forgetting stuff/ someone, this is a fool-proof way to start/ continue. i love it and every time i walk into our bedroom or the kitchen or wherever it is (we move it around to shake things up) my mind can return immediately to focusing on prayer. very very helpful and conducive to a busy/ moving/ crazy wonderful life style 😉

  9. posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 2:36 PM  |  reply

    “And yet I look at my life and realize that I talk about prayer more than I pray.”

    That is *exactly* what the Lord has been convicting me of lately. And everywhere I turn everyone is talking about the importance of prayer and its like God is saying ‘Forgetting can no longer be your excuse.’

    Thanks for this post, another convicting reminder from the Lord.

    PS… I’ve been reading your blog since your post over at YLCF. THANK YOU for sharing your heart in writing.

  10. Anna
    posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 2:42 PM  |  reply

    I traveled alot last week with work and it gave me the wonderful opportunity to listen to seven of the chapters of Daniel from Miss Beth’s Bible study. One of the things that really strikes me about Daniel himself was his obvious devotion to studying scripture and regular prayer. God esteemed him – that message from Gabriel to Daniel always makes me ponder the kind of man Daniel was. And it has also put my pitiful prayer and Bible study habits in my mind.

    I like the ideas of writing them down. I think I’ll try it!

  11. posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 4:22 PM  |  reply

    I’ve known Jesus for thirty-four years and I still struggle in this area.

    I look forward to reading your creatively- and informatively-titled two-part plan.

  12. posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 6:23 PM  |  reply

    Annie, I cannot wait to read the plan…I struggle with being devout in my prayer time too. I struggle with getting to that point of praying instead of rambling. I struggle with keeping focused. Girl, I struggle with prayer. I so need a plan and can’t wait to see what ideas your plan will give me!

    ps…lovingkindness, my new favorite word.

  13. posted on Sep 28, 2009 at 10:50 PM  |  reply

    I like the informative subtitle. It leaves me with anticipation for the plan. 🙂 Prayer is something I need to work on too!

  14. Merideth Schoolcraft
    posted on Sep 29, 2009 at 7:34 AM  |  reply

    What is the name of the book series by Mark Driscoll you are talking about?

  15. posted on Oct 01, 2009 at 8:39 AM  |  reply

    Boy oh boy oh boy! Do I ever struggle with this. Big time. My husband does, too. And we pray every night together, but seem to frequently leave it till we’re just too darn tired. I have so enjoyed reading your blog and especially all about your 2-part plan. I am an American living in Scotland with my Scots husband, and it’s pretty much a spiritual desert up here. I miss the faith communities of the American South. I’m a Florida Girl. Anyway, I found your blog through a series of clicking from the (in)courage website. Love it! Thanks for the blessing!
    Stacey

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