Remember back in school, when you had a test and the teacher said, “You can bring a notecard full of information and use it during the test.”? I had a few teachers like that. It was an approved “cheat” sheet. Often, after carefully writing the most important things so it would all fit onto the notecard, when it came time for the test, I didn’t even need to look at it. When I did need to look, it was so helpful to have it there. Having that “cheat sheet” decreased my stress and helped me to succeed.
Years ago, I created my first prayer “cheat” sheet. It is still one of my favorite prayer tools. At first, I was hesitant because I didn’t want to have vain repetitions in my prayers and I thought if I had things written down my prayers would become more repetitive. Interestingly, my prayers have become much more varied with my “cheat sheet” than when I was trying to think of things I want to pray about during my prayer. Planning it out ahead of time opens the space to really delve deeper during my prayers.
I have a main “cheat sheet” that pretty much stays consistent all the time. Here are some key items on mine. Yours may look completely different and that is OK. You may also find over time you add or take away items from your main prayer sheet, because your life changes.
- Me, Husband – Kids 1, 2, 3
- Mom and Dad, MIL, FIL, BIL, SIL, Kids
- Friends – I list out my close friends
- VT – List out sisters I visit teach and who visit teach me
- Leaders in Church and World who need my prayers – RS, Bishop, Prophet, World Leaders
- Gift of Discernment – Power to Resist Temptation
- Anything to Repent?
You may notice I don’t write out details. It is more of a bullet list. Just like for a test, I wouldn’t write full sentences on my cheat sheet, so I could fit more on it. The key points help to remind me what I want to cover and it is easy to fill in the details in the moment.
I have this sheet as a word document and print it out every month or so and I sometimes make changes or add new things. On the sheet I will write people who need prayers as they come to my attention. It is so great to be able to tell someone, “I will pray for you.” and know I will because they are on my prayer sheet. I will sometimes pull out my phone and add to my to do list, “add Angela to prayer sheet” so I remember to do it. Then each morning when I pray, I remember to pray for her and her needs are at the front of my mind when I pray. Then when I see her a week later, I can let her know I have been praying for her. It feels so good.
This is probably the simplest yet most powerful tool I have added to my prayers and I LOVE it.
Take time today to create your main prayer sheet. (I now just call them prayer sheets, because it really isn’t “cheating.”) This would be where you write the GENERAL things you would like to pray for daily.
“Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit.”
If you want more information or support on creating a Prayer Sheet watch this video.
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