What bothers you most – the dust or the clutter? I can live with a bit of dust on the furniture, but it’s the clutter that drives me crazy. Shoes piled at the door, the kitchen table a catch-all for books and papers, the basket at the bottom of the stairs overflowing and everyone (including myself) stepping around it – can make me feel buried and burdened. It’s hard to look to tomorrow when I’m trying to find my child’s Very Important Paper from school that I was supposed to sign and send back today.
Our spiritual lives can get cluttered, too. Busy trying to stop a 2-year-old before she flushes a hairbrush down the toilet or running after the dog that “nobody” let out the door, we neglect our time with God, the very moments that can reset and declutter our hearts and minds. It’s those moments that allow us to recenter—to regain focus and vision for who we are in God and what His purpose is for our lives.
The Bible tells us God orders the steps of a good man or woman. He has amazing things planned for us if we can clear a path through the clutter. As we look to the new year, here are five prayers (and a bonus!) you can pray to make room for God in every area of your life.
Marriage and family.
“By wisdom a house is built, and through understanding it is established; through knowledge its room are filled with rare and beautiful treasures.” Proverbs 24:3-4 NIV
If you’re struggling to see the “beautiful treasures” within your home, pray this prayer:
God, I thank You for my family. I thank You for the uniqueness of everyone within my household. I ask for Your wisdom to appreciate our differences. I ask for a spiritual understanding to see the treasures around me. Clear out the misunderstandings and confusion and help us to love one another. I make room for You in my home and in my marriage, in Jesus’ name. Amen.
“Jesus said, ‘Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.’” Matthew 19:14
Children are a blessing—and a responsibility. If life has distracted you from your God-given calling to raise your children in the Lord, pray this prayer:
God, I ask You to show me how to teach my children about You. Show me how to help them develop a personal faith in You as their Lord and Savior and to find their identity as Your child. Forgive me for where I have hindered their faith or allowed the clutter of schedules and extra-curricular activities to hold them back. I make room for You to guide me in my parenting. In Jesus’ name, amen.
“And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.” Hebrews 10:24
Good friends will inspire us to do good deeds! But toxic relationships create anxiety and ultimately will hold you back from living a life of godly purpose. If you’re lacking community and healthy friendships, pray this prayer:
God, I ask You to guide me in my relationships. Help me connect with people who will inspire me towards love and goodness. Give me the courage to identify toxic relationships and show me the friendships I should build and cultivate. I trust You, and I make room for You to help me establish godly, encouraging friendships. In Jesus’ name, amen.
“And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.” Colossians 3:17
Bad attitudes or simple weariness can affect how we perform at work. If you need a refresh in your mindset towards your career, here’s a prayer for you:
Dear God, please come and refresh my heart towards the work at hand. Forgive me for my bad attitude and areas where I’ve been lazy or uncaring. I thank You for my job and Your provision. I pray You would help me approach every task with excellence and the right spirit so that You will be glorified. I make room for You in my workplace, in Jesus’ name!
“But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow…” Matthew 6:33-34
The burden of worry lifts off our lives when we put first things first. If the cares of this life have weighed you down, here’s a prayer for you:
God, I trust You and Your plan for my life. I seek You and all Your goodness. I confess my fear and worry and ask for your wonderful provision in every area of my life: financially, relationally, physically and emotionally. I believe You care for me and every detail of my life. I make room for You in Jesus’ name. Amen.
“Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that ruin the vineyards…” Song of Solomon 2:15
It’s the little foxes that ruin the vine… and often, it’s the little sins that pile up, one upon another, that clutter our lives. The gossip we pass around at work, the unkind words we say to the girl at the counter, the anger we take to bed with us. Fortunately for you and me, God is very loving and forgiving. He daily gives us fresh mercies! Here’s a prayer to pray:
God, I confess that I have sinned. I confess my sin of _____________, and I ask for Your forgiveness. Please come and cleanse my heart. Create a new and right spirit within me. Give me the courage to seek forgiveness from those I have harmed with my sin. I love You, and I trust in Your mercy to set things right. In Jesus’ name, amen.
God has a beautiful plan for your life, but it’s often hard to believe when our vision is clouded by clutter. As you make room for Him, expect joy. Expect peace. It’s going to be a very good new year.
“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:7