The Jesus Prayer

Last night, I had a hard time getting to sleep, which isn’t a rare occurrence. When this often happens I use it as an opportunity for prayer. I usually then fall asleep sooner than I would like!

One prayer that has refreshed my prayer life is “The Jesus Prayer,” a short, formulaic prayer advocated by Eastern churches. Far from being a “magic formula” or “chant” as some may critically claim, The Jesus Prayer is instead a framework or “recipe” for prayer that you can easily memorize and “hang your hat on” while trying to pray.

If you’re like me, the biggest obstacle to prayer is time and mental wandering. The Jesus Prayer is a powerful answer to both; it takes just seconds to recite and also provides a skeleton on which you can build and add additional praises and requests.

The prayer is a poignant reminder firstly of who Jesus is (our Lord and Son of God), what He has done and does (provides mercy and salvation) and also who we are (sinners in need of daily repentance). It’s simple, but really helps me! I hope it will for you too.


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