I wonder how we’re meant to pray when there are so many distractions around us. In fact I even find my own brain a distraction. Jesus tells us to go into a room and close the door. But my mind starts to fill up the hole left by the lack of external noise straight away. It stays “When is that movie on? What was that noise? How did that stain get on my shirt?” Honestly, it’s ridiculous what it will come up with. I often find that it's so important to actually find something that focuses your mind on becoming aware of God's presence. Something that brings our mind under control. Because, in a way, it’s only when you imprison the chatter of your mind that you actually become free to hear from God.
My favourite band, twenty one pilots, says this in one of their songs.
“…Tie a noose around your mind, loose enough to breath fine and tie it to a tree. Tell it, you belong to me, this ain’t a noose, this is a leash and I have news for you, you must obey me.”
I encourage you to do what the lyric suggests. Before going through the prayer prompts, spend three minutes doing something that entraps your mind into focusing entirely on God. Read a verse of scripture out loud. Sing a line from a hymn. Find a poem. Keep it simple.