In this mini-series on prayer for the month of August, you’ll learn how to pray in unique ways. We begin the series with adoration: adoring God through thanksgiving and praise. Phylicia talks about how to do this with Scripture and some practical tips for implementing daily.

For more on spiritual disciplines, join Phylicia’s newsletter here:


Listen Now



Welcome to Verity Podcast. I’m your host, Phylicia Masonnheimer, and I am here to teach you how to know what you believe, to live it boldly, and to communicate it graciously to the world around you. I believe that women are ready to go deeper in their faith than ever before and they don’t have to go to seminary to do it. I am so glad you’re here and I hope you’ll join be on this journey, because Every Woman is a Theologian. 

Hi friends. Welcome back to Verity Podcast. This is the first of a short series on Prayer that I’m going to be doing to finish out the summer. I’m going to be doing an episode every week in August and then a little bit into September until we finish this quick miniseries on Prayer and then begin a new series on theology through the rest of the fall.

So for this miniseries, we’re going to actually focus on different types of prayer. And we’re going to start with the typical ACTS model of prayer. It’s an acronym, ACTS, for adoration, confession, Thanksgiving and Supplication. And those four are what we will be focusing on in the month of August. This week we are going to start by talking about adoration. What does it look like in prayer? And these will be shorter episodes, so really quick to listen and I hope very quick to implement as well. When we think about Prayer, as I discussed in our previous episode, Why Pray If God is Sovereign? We often default to a list of requests. So we’re praying what we want, what we need, what we’re worried about, and that’s good and necessary.

God wants to hear our desires, he wants to engage with us. But prayer is more than a list of requests. And until we change our mindset about prayer, we will only pray in this requesting model. And we’ll miss out on the intimacy that is available to us through our prayer life. We’ll also miss out on the changed mind and heart that inevitably comes from an expanded prayer practice. So praying in different ways than just the things we want. So now we would be praying in a way that connects us with God and his character, not just connects us to the things that we’re already worried about. 

So I want to give you a little definition of adoration prayer or adoring prayer. This is from Richard Foster’s book Prayer, one of my favorite books on prayer that was ever written. A very simple title, but a great book. So here’s what adoration is. He defines it as the spontaneous yearning of the heart to worship, honor, magnify and bless God. He says in the prayer of adoration, we love God for himself, for his very being, and for his radiant joy. And so the focus in adoration prayer moves from us and what we want, who we are, our concerns, to talking to God about God, thanking him for who he is, for what he’s doing. And it opens our eyes to what is already being answered.

That’s the big thing about adoration that we forget. It opens our eyes to the ways God is already answering us. And when we don’t pray in an adoration fashion, we can get all consumed with whether or not we’re getting the things that we want. And of course, being a human in this world requires that we experience some suffering in different ways. And sometimes God lifts that suffering, sometimes he doesn’t. What helps us face that suffering in prayer, is adoration. It turns our eyes to the greater purpose and the heart of God when we are in the middle of painful circumstances. And this has been true for the suffering that I have walked through personally.

So I want to give Richard Foster’s distinction on adoration. He says that there are two types of adoration or two forms, it takes on thanksgiving and praise. And he says the difference is that in thanksgiving we give glory to God for what he has done for us. And in praise, we give glory to God for who he is in himself. So there’s two different things here. Thanksgiving is what God has done, and praise is this is who God is in and of himself. And we can actually kind of interchange these two things.

You can adore God for a variety of things, just as you can celebrate a person for a variety of things that they do or things that they are. And so when we are engaging with God in this way, we are actually engaging heart to heart with him. Character to character, person to person. Something, I think, that we miss when we pray pragmatically. 

  1. S. Lewis actually identifies a few things that keep us from adoration. And the first is inattention. So, being distracted, I think we can all say that we’ve been distracted during prayer. I don’t think that that’s always a bad thing always. I think it’s a human thing, but it is something to work on. Attention is a muscle. Focus is a muscle. We live in an age where a lot of people will say it’s just my personality or maybe they genuinely have something like ADHD. But even if you have ADHD or ADHD tendencies, myself, among them, there is an attention muscle that must be cultivated. It is a practice. It is a discipline. And it may look slightly different from person to person, learning style to learning style. You know, I’m an advocate for that. I talk about that in my Bible in the Year Club. But it is so important that we discipline our minds to focus in our work, to focus in our prayer, in our Bible study. It will not come easily, it’s something we have to choose. So note that inattention will be a distraction right from the beginning. And prepare yourself in adoration to be consistent, whether in five minute increments, ten minutes or longer. 

Now I want to turn to a book that is all about adoring prayer. It’s called Adore by my friend Sarah Hagerty. It is amazing. The subtitle is a simple practice for experiencing God in the middle minutes of your day. And that’s what I love about adoring prayer. You can implement this at any point during your day. You don’t have to have a set aside time for it. Although I think that it is really good to have a set prayer time at the beginning of your day, when it doesn’t happen and even when it does, you can pray throughout the day. And she has a great example of how you would do this based on Scripture. So she used a base text in Psalm 57, and off of that text she wrote this adoration prayer. You save me, God. You fight for me. You defend me against my enemies. Most days my enemy. Is the fear within me more significant than my circumstances, more significant than whatever happens. As I run to you, fear dissipates simply by falling into your arms. The weight of fear lifts. You fight for me as you hold me, God. I adore you, God, for fighting for me so that I don’t have to fight for me. I come to you and you fight. You take my weakness and you turn it into your battle. I adore you, my defender. 

This is an example of adoring prayer. Now, of course, Sarah’s a beautiful writer. It’s beautifully written. But God doesn’t care if your prayers are as lovely in their words as what she is written here. What he cares about is that you are bringing it to him. You can also pray very short adoring prayers. You are my God. You go before me. Deliver me God. Lord, you are on my side. I will not fear. So these are examples of prayers that draw attention to God’s goodness. They turn your eyes to his goodness. You’re adoring him for who he is, and in doing so, you’re preaching the truth about him back to yourself. This is something that’s been working really well for me. In my psalms practice that I’ve been doing. 

I mentioned this a couple of weeks ago in my episode on Praying and God’s sovereignty. But I’ve been using a book called Psalms in 30 Days by Trevin Wax. Of course, the psalms are not by Trevin Wax, the psalms are by David and others. But he compiled them together, along with different creeds and prayers and quotes from famous catechisms, into one beautiful book. And you can get it at Holman Christian Standard publishers. So each day is divided into three prayers, morning, midday, and evening. I have alarms set throughout my day to remind me to stop and pray. And right now I’m at the midday prayer for day one or August 1. And so it has psalm 6. Here it has Psalm 7, and later on it will take me into Psalm 8. So for Psalm 6 and 7 at midday, what I do is I read the Psalm and then I take a portion of it and I pray it back to God as adoration. So, for instance, Psalm 6, verses 4 through 5, “Turn Lord, rescue me, save me because of your faithful love, for there is no remembrance of you in death. Who can thank you in shale?” All right, my first thought is, when I read through this, what truth did I learn about God? Well, number one, he’s a rescuer. Number two, he’s a savior. And number three, he is faithfully loving. 

So I can pray this prayer back to God by saying, Lord, be my rescuer. Lord, you are my savior. Your faithful love supports me. Thank you so much for that. I can do that in the middle of the day anywhere I am, and it kind of reorients me back to God’s saving grace, the fact that he’s my rescuer and this practice of having alarms go off basically six, seven times a day as a reminder to pray. The psalms in my case has been fantastic because it’s constantly reorienting me back to the reality of who God is. And that’s what adoration prayer does. So for this first episode on adoration, I hope this gave you a great introduction. 

Now for the practicals, here are some next steps for you this week. If you don’t want to use a prayer book or a Psalm book, you could go through an index card stack of your favorite verses and turn those into adoration prayers. It’s great because it’s both memorization of Scripture and prayer at the same time. So as you’re memorizing those verses, turn them into prayers of adoration to God. Or maybe you want to also set alarms multiple times a day and pull up the psalms on your phone and just work through the psalms and pray them back to God at the times that those alarms go off or write sticky notes that you put throughout your house or on your desk at work or in your car. And they’re just short phrases that you pray to God whenever you see them.

These are practical ways to adore God this week. I would really encourage you to try this this week. If it’s something that is transforming for you or helpful to you, let us know. Every Woman a Theologian is on Instagram. We would love to hear from you there. Or you can find me on Facebook and Instagram as well. Next week we will talk about confession and how to practically pray our confession to God throughout the day as well. I hope you’re enjoying this prayer series and I’ll see you next week.

Thank you so much for listening to this week’s episode of Verity Podcast. If you enjoyed this episode, would you take the time to leave us a review? It helps so many other women around the world find out about Verity and about every woman a theologian as a ministry in a shop. We appreciate you and hope you’ll be back next week as we continue to go deeper into God’s Word and the heart of Jesus Christ.

    Your Cart
    Your cart is emptyReturn to Shop