Places Designated for Prayer – Part 1
The Environment for Prayer – Part 2
In our previous installment we introduced you to the concept of “The Environment of Prayer,” which has two main breakouts so to speak: 1) places designated for prayer and 2) the environments conducive for prayer. We will begin with “the places designated for prayer.” But before we go there, allow me to revisit why we’re writing on “prayer” in the first place. Pamela and I were given a God-opportunity to lead the campus prayer team for our local church. Let me say this and you won’t believe it. I’m just going to say it so that one day when I look back I remember this statement myself. I never in my lifetime had any thoughts or ambitions to lead a prayer team or a group of pray-ers (people who pray). However, this opportunity opened not only a door, but it opened up something inside of me.
We realized that religion makes things hard for the religious. We’ve concluded that we, religious people, have made prayer so difficult that the average person is unable to pray. We say with our lips that it’s easy and everyone can do it. We say there’s no wrong way to pray, but our religious actions prove otherwise. I recall one member of our prayer team who was very apprehensive about coming to join us because she thought she didn’t have what it takes to be a pray-er. Where did she get that from? She got it from us, the church, the religious. That’s what led Pamela and me to form a study group called “next level prayer” and this content was born. We write because we realized that no one, not one single person understands that the exercise of prayer can be taught and like exercise, one can become more prayerfully-fit the more one gets involved in it.
This message focused on one aspect of the places designated for prayer, in which I will reveal this dilemma mentioned above.
What places can you think of that are designated for prayer at home?
When we talk about places designated for prayer, I’d like to start out with our homes. When we think about places people pray at home, here’s what comes to mind: a chair used for quiet time, prayer closet, in the shower, at the table before a meal, and at the bedside or in bed.
- A Place for Quiet Time
Many believers say they have this place for quiet time and I will be honest with you it sounds good. It sounds like a good idea and I’m not going to knock that concept, but who came up with the idea that prayer is done in your quiet time? We will get to that a little later, since we will remain focused on the designated place. Having a place to pray is different than having a place for prayer. Quiet time implies that you’re not about to have a conversation. Prayer or better stated talking to God as we’ve learned is more than simply being quiet. Also, there is something not quite right with the person who substitutes the words quiet time for prayer or talking to God. Going to the next level, I’d think you’d want the place you’ve spoken to God to be known as the place where you meet with God.
When Abraham, famously known for making a sacrifice of his son, Isaac, went to carry out God’s instructions. He was interrupted by a call of his name from Heaven. After it was all said and done, he gave that place where he spoke with God the name Yahweh-Yireh (translations: the Lord will provide.) Would you minimize the place where God instructs you, listens to you, and conversates with you, as your quiet time place as if you’re ashamed to call that your place of prayer? This is next level prayer!
- Prayer Closest
I found this verse and it made perfect sense.
“But when you pray, go away by yourself, shut the door behind you, and pray to your Father in private.” 
The Prayer-Closet is one of the most common places of prayer. However, I’d like to challenge the idea of your prayer-closet and ask you, is that even in the Bible? I get this verse I just shared says to get by yourself and close the door, but it’s not implying your closet door. Could we be doing more harm than good by implying we should be praying or communicating with God in a closet? Have you ever tried this? I have because like most I thought it was the right thing to do. Someone led me to believe that. [To the left] Let me dispel that notion. There is no rule that you should be praying in your closet. In fact, examine the people in the Bible and see where they prayed. Even Jesus went outside of the house to pray.  Have we been limiting those who are watching us by making them think we should be in our closet? In other words, let’s get beyond this typical thinking that’s not supported by the one book that’s our guide for how prayer works. This is next level prayer!
- In the Shower
I will have to admit that we spend a large amount of time praying in the shower. However, let me say this along with that; we pray far more than just in the shower. I don’t want to leave you feeling it’s okay to only pray in the shower. You see, if you pray only in the shower, how then can your children see your discipline of prayer? How will your children, who you should be training, learn how to pray from you? As we’ve experienced and I’ve mentioned, when we do such things, we close the door on how people learn how to pray. If you recall in previous messages, I asked the question: who taught you how to pray? Let’s not leave it to chance that our children and those who we mentor will learn how to pray on their own. More than likely that will not be the case.
However, praying in the shower is a great place to pray especially for those who have a spouse. Using your shower as a reminder to pray makes a habit out of praying. This is next level prayer!
- Dinner Table Prayer
Let us make a distinction here. Prayer over or at a meal should not be viewed as communion or “The Lord’s Supper.” You’d be surprised that most people don’t know the difference. How can they? They’ve not been taught to pray. Most people all they have are the prayers prayed over a meal. Therefore, the dinner table is a place where we often find people “blessing a meal.” “Blessing a meal” is a very limiting way to pray. In fact, it’s probably not prayer at all. It is interesting that we don’t even call it a prayer anymore but we call it “blessing our meal.” Is that really your place of prayer?
Let me tell you what normal is. Normal is repeating the same prayer at each meal.
“God is great; God is good…” 
[To the left] You do know that repeating the same prayer over and over is anti-Christ behavior.  That means it goes against what Christ teaches. Why in the world would we repeat our prayers over and over again when He says don’t be like that. There’s no need for that. I’ve concluded that we’ve just not been taught that. Hence the reason for this lesson in next level prayer.
What would it look like to be uncommon? What if we used the dinner table as a prayer reminder or prompt to encourage specific prayers. What if you gave it a little more thought? Took it a little more seriously? This could be the best opportunity to take your prayer exercise to the next level. What if we became more intentional about this place of prayer with our family? What if we took it from our current level to the next level?!
- Bedside / In bed
By the bedside or in the bed has to be another one of the most popular places of prayer. Here is what I’m not saying. I’m not saying that one shouldn’t pray at the bedside or in the bed. I’m not saying that the place where you pray is inferior or wrong. What I am saying is that if that’s where you are, why not take it to a higher level? Why not improve what you’re doing? Let us not leave an impression that prayer is only done late at night or when we’re getting into bed. God wants to talk to us more than just when we’re closing down for the day. If this is your only place of prayer, are you willing to wait all day until bedtime before you offer that (whatever that may be) up to God in prayer? Come on now, you’re better than that. You’re a believer for Christ’s sake. This is next level prayer!
I just mentioned that you’re better than that. In fact, prayer is to be enjoyed. If your place of prayer doesn’t bring you enjoyment in the activity, I suggest you get a new place. Let’s not settle with the few examples we’ve been given, when God has a world of places available for us to pray. Maybe you have to get up and go to the kitchen and have coffee with Jesus. Maybe He wants to meet with you while you’re on the throne [to the left]. I am sort of serious. Maybe He wants your attention in a special place in your home. Maybe He wants you to be attentive and you need to meet with Him behind a desk. Take the limits off of the place. In fact, ask God where He would like for you to meet with Him. Now we’re getting somewhere. This is next level prayer!
Question: in what other places inside your home can you offer that might be a great place for prayer?
 Matthew 6:6 NLT, Bible.com, accessed July 21, 2022, https://www.bible.com/116/mat.6.6.nlt
 Mark 1:35 NIV, Bible.com, accessed July 21, 2022, https://www.bible.com/bible/111/MRK.1.35.NIV
 Unknown. “child’s mealtime blessing.” WorldPrayer.org. Accessed July 22, 2022. worldprayers.org/archive/prayers/celebrations/god_is_great_god_is_good.html
 Matthew 6:7-8 NLT, Bible.com, accessed July 22, 2022, https://www.bible.com/116/mat.6.7-8.nlt
All Scripture references used by permission, see our Scripture copyrights.