9 Ways to Get Over the Fear of Praying Out Loud

Several weeks ago, I wrote about the importance of praying out loud with your children:

Prayer is the heart of a relationship with Jesus.  How can there be relationship without communication? If we want our kids to develop a relationship with Him, they have to become comfortable with prayer, and that is much less likely to happen if they only hear prayers in church on Sundays. Praying as a family is critical.

Despite the importance of family prayer, it has been very difficult for me to overcome my fear of praying out loud, even when the “audience” only involves small children and a husband. I know many people have this fear, so today I’m sharing nine things I have found helpful in getting over it. Don’t let your prayer discomfort minimize your opportunity to give your children the life-long gift of a rich prayer life!

1.       Pray out loud when you’re alone.

If no one is around to hear you pray, do you feel comfortable praying out loud in front of yourself? I found one day that I couldn’t even do that! Start praying out loud when you’re alone and you’ll eliminate the surprise of hearing your own voice before you actually pray in front of someone else.

2.       Accept that you don’t have to pray like other people.

I’m not a poetic, beautifully-flowing-praise-language kind of person. The problem is, it seems like everyone I hear praying out loud is. That has developed an expectation in my own mind that prayer needs to sound beautiful. My prayers sound conversational. When I accepted that and no longer tried to pray like other people pray, it became much easier. Pray out loud just like you would pray silently.

3.       Keep your prayers short. Really, it’s OK.

I’ve mentally made it into such an event when I pray out loud that I feel like I really have to go all out and say something big when I do it. When you go long for the sake of going long, however, you end up saying things that are less heartfelt, less natural, and more awkward. Then you don’t want to do it again. Whenever you would normally end a silent prayer, end your verbal prayer.

4.       Try new types of prayer on your own before trying them out loud.

I would like to start praying over my children at night, to give them the blessing of a prayer said just for them. However, I don’t currently pray for them unless there is a specific need, such as healing. The thought of suddenly praying out loud for conceptual things like their spiritual development and discernment is intimidating and keeps me from doing it. I’m going to start praying for them on my own for a while until I feel comfortable enough to pray audibly over them.

5.       Write down what you want to pray about before you pray.

If part of your fear relates to just not knowing what to say, it is immensely helpful to write down a set number of things that you want to pray about before you get started. This works really well when praying out loud with kids, because they are in the same boat of uncertainty as they learn what prayer is all about. Work with them to create the prayer list, then use it to pray together out loud.

6.       Embrace the opportunity to pray out loud when you are especially troubled.

This might sound counterintuitive, but chances are, it’s easier for you to pray out loud when you are the most troubled. Why? Because you know exactly what to talk about. There is something very specific on your heart at that moment. It’s often most intimidating to pray when there is nothing wrong because the sky is the limit on things to be grateful for and things to praise God for. Where do you even start? Embrace the opportunity to pray out loud when you have something very specific to talk about!

7.       When praying for others, ask them for one specific prayer request.

There may be nothing more terrifying to me than being placed in a situation where I’m asked to pray with or for another person directly (e.g., at a retreat, in a small group, after church, etc.). It’s very difficult to be thrown into a prayer situation you aren’t prepared for. Unless you’ve already ducked out to the bathroom, ask the person for one specific thing they want you to pray for to avoid an onslaught of requests you fear you won’t remember. Their specific answer will help you feel more prepared.

8.       In the context of family prayers, try leading a “round-table” style.

When we pray at night, we often do a round-table prayer where the person leading the prayer says a simple introduction and then says, “…and Nathan would like to thank you for (Nathan gives thanks)…and Kenna would like to thank you for (Kenna gives thanks)…” and so on. This is a great way to ease into praying out loud because you are only acting as a “facilitator” of the prayer. It’s less pressure for you, and gives your kids the opportunity to get used to praying out loud themselves.

9.       Start with meal time prayers.

If the idea of any audible prayer makes you shudder, simply start with meal time prayers. You can do it: “Dear God, Thank you for this food. In Jesus’ name, Amen.” Say it with your children, say it with your spouse. But say it. Even those few words will open the door to more comfort with praying out loud.

What barriers do you have to praying out loud? What has helped you become more comfortable?

76 thoughts on “9 Ways to Get Over the Fear of Praying Out Loud”

  1. I think the main thing is just praying out loud often. At first you will be nervous, but the more you do it the more normal it becomes. 🙂

    1. That is true the more you pray out loud with others. The easier it shall get. But keep the lord by your side he will help you

  2. So interesting, because I thought I was in a minority here. And guess what? I’m a pastor, and I hate praying out loud. Really. You share some great ideas, especially letting people know it’s OK to keep it short and real.

  3. Natasha, this speaks directly to me! I have feared praying out loud for so long, and only in the last two years or so have I been pushing myself out of the silent box I’d rather comfortably stay inside of. I started with praying out loud for my kids at bedtime, in their presence. It was hard. But I survived and learned that they love it! The only thing they said every once in a while was “mommy, that was a really long prayer!” Now they actually ask me to pray for and with them. We also pray before meals and I’ve started asking the girls to say the blessing if I’m still putting things on the table and my husband is running late from work. I love hearing their cute voices say the blessing. We also hold hands around the table, which I love. I know this is an issue God is pushing me to grow stronger in because He seems to be putting me in more and more situations where I’m leading a group and SHOULD pray before we start. Of course afterward, I usually kick myself for letting fear keep me from doing the right thing. I know I can do it. I know He has equipped me. I know that even when I can’t find the words, The Holy Spirit will prompt me. I just hate being tongue tied and feeling like I’ll sound like a fool. This is all great advice that you give. I will be praying for you to find the courage to improve in your prayer life. Would you also pray for me? 🙂 Thank you so much, dear friend!

    1. Rosann, I get sweaty hands even reading about someone else praying in front of a group. haha 🙂 Thank you for sharing your prayer challenges, and for your kind offer to pray for me! I will certainly pray for you as well. May we both depend on the Holy Spirit rather than ourselves!

      1. It is nice to know that I have company. I am 65 yesrs of age and joined a lenten bible class. Was afraid that I would be called on to read.
        On the way home I fell on old uncovered trolley tracks. By the grace of God a man came on his bike and lifted me up.
        I might have gotten run over when the light changed since it was dark. I now believe that God will help me to read with confidence and love.
        Thanks and God bless all of you.

    2. Its good to be in the presence of the most high…..i get to realize over time that when i saturate my spirit with worship, there is always a free flow of the right word,but when praying abruptly like in a meeting, my vocabulary is full of redundancy and that strip me of my self confidence and hence nervousness….. thanks for i before now thought i was the only one in this struggle….. its good to know that out of my mistake i can make amends…….thank you all wonderful friends in the Lord……

      1. This is me. Exactly. When I am called on the spot. I stumble. My brain doesn’t work. Seem like I can’t remember scriptures or what I want to say

    3. I read this letter from roseann and I thought about how many years I let go by because I didn’t like being on the spot. no matter what came up I would wiggle out of it. I feel like I let most of my Christian life go by because of it. I cant explain how much I have missed . when I think about it. it makes me so sad. Im practicing as I speak . I feel like I just cant take it any more.

  4. These are perfect suggestions. We have been praying together before meals for quite some time now, but i have been wanting other ways to introduce it to my boys at other times of the day. I like the “facilitator” idea and writing prayers down first sounds like a good way to get all of us prepared for prayer. It is thought provoking when you have to write things down. Thank you!

    1. That’s great Denise, thank you! I’m so glad you were able to gain some ideas from it. “Facilitation” helped me a lot to get used to hearing my own voice. Then slowly I started saying more at the beginning of the prayer before I “called” on each person. Now I can say the prayers much more easily!

  5. Thank you so much for this! I really felt like I was alone in my prayer-insecurity. I was saved in college and I grew up in an environment where praying aloud was discouraged. Even now, years later, I panic in some of the situations you described.
    The thing that really hits home for me is that my prayer can be personal to me, it doesn’t have to fit some sort of model or formula for prayer. The idea is so liberating. Thank you.

  6. What if you have a hard time praying out loud?? I stutter when I talk so sometimes it’s very depressing when I’m trying to really express myself verbally to God and the words don’t come out.

    1. Hi, this is kinda 1.5 years late but, well, as long as your heart is 101% in it, don’t worry about your stutter when you’re praying because God already knows your heart even before you express yourself verbally.
      “And when you pray, do not heap up empty phrases as the Gentiles do, for they think they will be heard for their many words. 8 Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him.” -Matthew 6:7-8

      I was saved in August 2013 and till now I’m still feeling nervous when praying out loud. Hopefully I’ll be able to get over this fear with your great advice! Thank you so much Natasha!

  7. Thank you so much for this! At school, we have an impact group every Tuesday I’ve been going to since 7th grade, and from them until even now (I’m a freshmen), I’ve been too afraid to pray out loud! Thank you for your helpful advice, it will come in handy 🙂

  8. I am so thankful that I found this! This year I was asked to lead a youth group and the Pastor told me he would like me to end with prayer at every meeting. I panicked and continue too. Reading this and all the post make me feel like I’m not alone. I have felt so insecure about this that I was even embarrassed to talk to anyone about it. But I felt I had to talk about it because it was really killing me. I told the Pastor I didn’t know how to pray and said to me “God isn’t fussy.” I try to remember that but I still feel judged by others when I do. This will really help me in my walk, thank you so much for sharing.

    1. I am totally the same way. I always feel everyone else just prays with such ease. It just comes out and always sounds so professional! I just don’t know how to do that. Once I start talking I can’t think of what I want to say next. I thought I was the only one that felt that way too.

  9. I just took over as chairperson on a committee at church. I will have to open and close the meetings with a prayer. I was raised a Catholic where all the prayers were the same and from memory. How am I ever going to be able to do this? I am so nervous. I’m thinking about writing some short prayers for each and learning them. Would that be too cheesy?

  10. Thank you sooooo much for this!!! I stumbled on it today & it was JUST what I needed. I feel God leading me as a prayer warrior & I do GREAT on my own, but when it come to praying out loud I freeze. I too felt I needed to sound like everyone else. Thank you for showing me I can pray the way I pray & not feel like I have to “sound” like everyone else! God bless you abundantly!!!!!!!

  11. I was really active in church some years back. The youth group I was in grew in number rapidly and I was put to take care of the younger kids. I had been dicipling them and leading them into prayers without any fear. But after some time, my walk with God became shaky as there were some disagreement with my leader. The hurt and awkwardness drew me away from church.

    5 years later, I decided that I should not let this problem be a stumbling block in my walk with God. I struggled and plucked up my courage to return to church.

    After I’m back in church, I realised that I have new struggles.. I can’t praise and worship God freely like how I used to. I can’t pray openly like how I used to. Even during a small group sharing, I’ll tremble and break cold sweat as I share my problems..

    My prayer style is conversational. I can pray really smoothly in my heart, but when I’m told to pray it out loud, I’ll panic.

    My boyfriend who has been encouraging me all this while had been making me pray over our meals. The fear in me kept me begging him to not let me do it. One day, I finally did it! I cried after that but he was cheering for me!

    Until this day, I’m still struggling to pray openly. My boyfriend led me to this page, hoping that it will be of help. I’ll try them and I hope that I’ll be able to pray freely like how I used to.. I dont want to be trap in this fear anymore.. It’s suffocating, unable to get near to God..

    1. Your story sounds similar to mine, and while I do still struggle in less familiar settings because of self-consciousness, and want to try these methods, one thing that really broke the barrier for me initially, was discovering my unrepented sin. I prayed and asked God to show me my sin, and he did. Many years earlier, I had lied to someone about something I had done, which I was ashamed of. Then, I justified it to myself, for years. When God showed me that sin, I contacted the person I wronged, and humbly asked them for forgiveness. They gave it happily, telling me they had forgiven me long ago. I guess they never told me because I never asked, wouldn’t even admit I needed it. At that moment I felt the barrier come down and I prostrated myself before God in gratitude. I hadn’t felt so close to him in years! The more we lower ourselves in humility, the more God lifts us up to him. It’s been such an amazing journey!

  12. Same here. So fearful of praying in a setting with other people. I listen to some begin to pray for others in the group and they sound so sincere and professional. I believe that I truly care for others and have empathy, but am too concerned about myself and how I might sound that I can’t pray for others. I am attending a women’s group of about 30 ladies once a month and some of them sound great when they pray. Everyone in the group is taking turns sharing their testimony, and I’m concerned about that also. Don’t know if I can do it because of nerves. However, Satan has kept me quiet and insecure all of my life. I might just step out and continue the meetings, praying, and giving my testimony just to give him a black eye because I’m tired of leaving the meetings without being able to speak out.

  13. Thank you for posting this.. really. I too struggle with praying out loud, so much that I even mentioned this to some of the members of my church. They most graciously understood but I did get the feeling that this is something which I need to concentrate on. Especially with why I am struggling.. is it because I want to please people more instead of the Lord? When I pray alone, sometimes I pray out loud… I guess that’s something I need to pray about.

    1. Hi Marie,
      I understand your situation and I don’t think, at all, it’s because you want to please others more than God. I think we feel that we will forget what we wanted to say in front of someone during prayer or that it sounds weird to appear that we are talking to ourselves. I think you are one of many, including myself, that has this issue. Just keep on praying and maybe it will become easier for both of us. God bless.

      1. So nice to here I am not alone. I have had this fear all of my christian life(many many years) . I am in a bible study and after prayer requests was asked to close in prayer. My response was “no, I’m not good at that”. I feel embarrassed that i couldnt pray but am terrified not just to pray in a group, but to do any kind of public speaking. I pray with my husband and daughters but its really hard for me in front of other people. I don’t know why but that’s just the way it is. My group leader looked at me like I was nuts when I said no.

        1. Wow I just have tears in my eyes right now …I just joined this group now and I’m so touched so far and blessed to know that I’m not alone in the struggle.My husband is a public figure …he motivates..counseling…and also preach and this is soooooo tough for me because I can’t do any form of public speaking and it hurts me so much when I get sidelines just because it’s like I’m useless I can’t even stand up and pray out loud..this has tormented me for sooooo many years I sometimes numbs the pain by not going to church at all and it hurts me so much I’m soo tired of this pain.

  14. Hi everyone,
    I am a fairly new Christian, about 2 years, and my life feels so much more fulfilled, but praying out loud has been an obstacle for me so I went in search of a website and luckily found this one. I was sitting in church this morning and witnessing a man praying out loud with another person. I was envious because he seemed to be able to do this without a thought first. I want this so much. I think about praying with my family all the time, but chicken out when it comes down to it. My family is also not where I am spiritually, which makes things more challenging. I find myself rehearsing prayers in my head and I feel that it is unnatural. Luckily I ran across this website and found this is not so uncommon. I found a lot of helpful hints. God bless.

  15. Angelica Hendenderson

    I thought I was the only person in America that find it hard to pray out loud my husband is a pastor and recently I have been opening up the church service in prayer and scripture, it is so challenging for me on Sunday’s, I know I think about it too much, and find myself sometimes lost for words, I truly love the Lord but this is so hard for me; I find myself praying about this all the time. After reading your story I am going to start out by keeping my prayers short and let it build from there. Thanks for sharing. Be blessed!

  16. This site was blessing for me to find. I recently joined a youth committee at church, and the first meeting everyone prayed out loud for the person beside them and then said a prayer. It was very scary for me and my voice became shaky, after the meeting, I realized that it didn’t matter what the others thought it was only what GOD had thought. I feel that if you step out of your comfort zone to praise GODS name and those around you, GOD gives you the strength from within to prosper in his name.

  17. I always tell myself that but doesn’t seem to help. I guess I think if I am so worried about how I sound to others then the prayer is really not to God.

    1. Trust God in bring your fears, stresses and worries to him..Maybe you have some sin in your life that you have not fessed up to.. Sister …we have our advocate…He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins !!!Go to Jesus and stop carrying the weight! 🙂

  18. Hello everyone. I’m in tears right now reading all your posts. I never for one second thought there were others like myself who struggle with praying out loud.
    I also find myself rehearsing prayers but when situation presents itself, I tend to shy away and conveniently ‘disappear’ from the room (e.g mini church gatherings). I really feel small and ashamed after doing that but I can’t seem to help it.

    I stumbled upon this website too in trying to research about this and ways to overcome this problem of mine. God is so great because He led me to a group of people who experience the same things I do. I truly am not alone.

    I have learnt a few pointers on how to face my fear. I trust and believe that God will see me through this and I’ll too be a testimony for someone going through this.

    Thank you all and may God richly bless you and give you the confidence and boldness which comes with being a child of God.

  19. Hello everyone, just when I thought I was the only one who struggles at praying out loud, here I am reading about the same issues I have, such as fear, insecurity and even asking God how can he help and he led me to your website. Thanks for all the great tips and suggestions. I know my prayer life will only get better from here on. May God continue to bless you in your ministry.

  20. Hello All,

    I have been blessed to have married a Christian man and also share this same fear. Its so easy for me to pray out loud by myself but I cant seem to do it in my husbands presence. This thanksgiving he requested I pray and I told him he should do it. I’m sure he was somewhat disappointed. Thank you for the suggestions. With Gods help I will get through this.

  21. I work at an outreach center. I am new in my learning and walking in Christianity although I have always believed in God. Before this job I had never been comfortable speaking in front of a crown, and very impervious about praying with others
    The only things that had helped is I am a recent college graduate at the age of 50 years old and we had to do presentations, that helped me to over come that fear. Then now with my job I have to ask clients if they want to pray most say yes, and so that I am perfecting. It is very fulfilling to pray with others although you do not know them. In God’s name.

  22. This is so much conformation, it blows my mind. I’ve always struggled with the fear of praying in front of others. But recently God’s been pushing me more and more outside my comfort zone and honestly i hate it at times.. as I’m sure everyone does haha. I’ve been struggling with it more than ever lately and i couldn’t help but to think that i don’t belong in the Christian world or in the Kingdom. I was actually beginning to think the only place i truly belong was in hell. (Drastic, i know. But it’s really been messing with me) when I’ve asked God to help, He told me almost exactly what you’ve written! Just when I was starting to believe the lies of the enemy, i found this blog. I don’t even remember how i found this post, but it was definitely the guidance of the Spirit 🙂

  23. Pingback: Prayer Paralysis « Choose Wisely

  24. This is amazing, I really thought that I was the only one in the entire world who felt this way, and didn’t even expect to find anything on the internet when I searched the topic! Thank you for your ideas Natasha, and for your honesty about your own challenges. I like the idea of praying aloud to myself first to get used to hearing my own voice. Unfortunately this fear has held me back my whole life and leads to times of awkward silence in groups, so then I just naturally want to avoid them, like bible study and camps etc. I do wish there was more understanding about this though, sometimes it’s a surprising concept for others. For some of us words just don’t seem to flow, but the feeling is there. I will work on it with God’s help!

  25. Thanks for your ideas natasha.I am surprised I thought I was the only one with fear of praying out loud.I Will work on it and I think we should also face our fear

  26. any advice for someone that blanks out when they pray out loud????

    i can pray smoothly when i do it silently, but when i do it out loud i forget half of what i was planning to say, even when im alone…….its frustrating……..i dont even pray in front of my husband cuz im so embarrassed 🙁

  27. This site has been such a blessing to me. Not only to read the wonderful suggestions Natasha made, but to hear the testimonies of others, it is so encouraging. I am praying (literally aloud) for all of us who struggle with this. I am praying that we walk in the acceptance of Christ and not the acceptance of others!

  28. I hope this helps me because I have always had the fear of playing aloud and we are starting a new group at school called FCA (fellowship of Christian athletes) and they asked me to be a leader. It is so pathetic I was thinking about not doing it so I wouldn’t have to pray aloud. I’m not a poetic prayer either so I’m glad I’m the only one. I just have to remember to speak from the heart.

  29. Thanks. I’ve been intimidated when asked to lead a group in prayer such as opening a church meeting or closing one. I feel like I never know what to say and I fumble all over my words. Your tips are very helpful. Thank you. God bless you

  30. Wow, its kind of wonderful that were all in this together and were not alone. Let’s all pray for each other to become mighty prayer warriors!!! To God be the Glory!!!

  31. Thank you for all this information. I am a lay preacher in the Methodist Church in the UK and lead a Bible study in which, at this time, we are discussing prayer. This week we are discussing praying with others and I wondered if there was any website which would help us to get to grips with this – not really believing that there would be. How wrong could I be?

    Although I lead worship, I write all my prayers out and seem quite confident – don’t believe that! I’m only confident because the words are there in front of me. I’m quite happy to lead our Bible study and open with prayer – but if I’m in a crowd of people, (even those I know) I never, well, almost never, open my mouth. I feel, like so many others it seems, that my prayers aren’t good enough. I forget that I’m praying to God – not the rest of the group. Reading your blog has made me feel braver, thank you all. God bless.

  32. I must say I was pleasantly surprise just knowing that I am not the only one experiencing these anxiety when coming to praying out loud. I thank each and everyone for your tips in getting around this issue and know that I will be praying for you all. Our God is bigger than any problem and we were not born with a sprit of fear. I keep telling myself this but yet I get nervous. I am now put on the cooperate prayer group in my church where you are randomly pick to pray. Thank God we are aware of it a month in advance which gives me the time to practice my praying aloud. It is still a work in progress and I can hear my voice quiver. My prayer is constantly for that spirit of boldness because I know our God is able. I pray that I can reach to that place where I can just go up on that alter and pray like I am simply having a conversation with my Maker, because in reality, that is exactly what it really is. God bless

  33. Thank you for your tips. I’ve struggled with this my whole life. On my own, in my head, I feel connected to God and can speak my mind. I don’t feel like I need to sound elequent. Then at my church and in my small group, there are so many who came to faith from very different backgrounds, and all seem to pray so beautifully. My small group leader is formerly Muslim, so I always feel his gratitude to the Lord for reaching him and pulling him out. Then when I try and pray with the group, I feel like I sound like I’m talking to a stranger. I’ve even avoided prayer meetings at church for that very reason! Thing is, I just became a youth leader, and can’t afford to have issues praying out loud – it’s expected of me regularly (yet another reason I know leading youth was God’s idea, not mine!) It never occurred to me it might be the sound of my own voice that I’m not comfortable with. I’m generally so self-conscious, it sure sounds like me! I’ll get started praying out loud right now! Thanks again!

  34. I fear praying out loud. I’m self conscious that i’m always so self aborbed when I pray, thinking about my life, my children, my husband etc. I worry I will say the wrong thing or trip over my words. I suppose my biggest fears are that I will be shown up as a bit of a fraud – not quite as Christian as everyone else somehow – or that i’ll just burst into tears!

  35. Thank you for this, I am going to a prayer meeting tonight. Was feeling a bit unsure of myself but after reading your feedback. It has opened my heart to endless possibilities! God is great. Be blessed.

  36. Can you please pray for me so that I will be brave to pray out loud in the future? I’m really scared to pray and sometimes I find myself under awkward situation as I do not know how to pray. Please help me, thank you.

  37. Varinia R Fatunmbi

    This really Blessed me knowing I’m not alone in the fear and anxiety I feel when asked to pray. Last Sunday my Bishop asked that someone be sure to pass me the mic and I avoided it like it was a plague. I pray alone out loud just fine. I keep telling myself fear is not from God, but in front of other people my words don’t flow.

  38. wow…it’s been over 4 years since this article was written and it’s still a blessing. I, too, struggle with this. I feel like I can’t say things the right way or as eloquently as others. How do they come up with the things they say? That’s what I always think. Thank you for your ideas. I will continue to work on this and continue to ask God for guidance.

  39. Teresita A. Franche

    Great. knowing that I’m not alone with the how I felt. fear praying in public or in a small group. I avoid praying meetings in the church because I don’t know how to pray out loud. I’m too nervous. Please pray for me that I will overcome my fear in praying out loud. I’m a Catholic background.

  40. Thank you for this, i am only 14 and I have been scared of praying in front of my class in the morning because my mind goes blank, I learnt with the practice of prayer that god tells you through prayer what to pray for.

  41. I had a problem with praying out in public at first. But first, i began to practice when no one was around. Then I practiced with one person on the phone i felt comfortable with. Then the one person became two person, then 2 person became 3 person, then 3 person became 4 person, the 4 person became 5 person, then 5 person became 6 person, the 6 person became 7 person, then 7 person became 8 person, then 8 became 9, and 9 became 10. So i started praying with one person and ended up praying around 10 people. By the time i got to the tenth person i knew i was on a Roll… Thank God!

  42. Natasha, I am so thankful for this short blog; I suppose you call it a blog, on “prayer out loud”. I live in an apartment a-joined to other apartments. I am so worried that if I pray out loud that the neighbours will hear me and complain, needless to say they do need Jesus. I have associated the fear of prayer out loud as to public speaking. We are so worried about how we articulate what we say because we have been brought up in a modern intellectual, articulate style of living world. Now we know God says in His Word, Romans 12:2 Do not be conformed to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind…. What I am saying from this verse is that we have allowed a worldly pattern (intellectualism and articulate communication) to overcome our spiritual effectiveness in prayer. The mind is actually referring to the heart-mind. God wants us to speak boldly from our heart, not our head, even shout as Joshua and his men did at Jericho, but it was done with God’s help.

    I like what you said in the first paragraph – “Start praying out loud when you’re alone and you’ll eliminate the surprise of hearing your own voice before you actually pray in front of someone else.”

    I like the surprise part. We become so self conscious that we stumble over ourselves. The shock of it makes us cringe, I think. It’s like ‘practice makes (perfect)better, just one step at a time, little by little’. I am definitely going to keep working on this, remembering that dependency on the Holy Spirit for guidance in what to say is part of the process of transformative prayer.

  43. Good morning…… I’m so glad I stumbled across this sight……I’ve always been nervous praying in a crowd. I would seriously like for you to pray that I can get over my nervousness. I have been struggling in this area for a while… There are days when I can do it and then I get my off days…Thank you that we can share this with our fellow brothers and sisters….. I will continue to strive though.. God bless… Charmaine

  44. Hi thank you for this wonderful sight that I stumbled across. I realize that I’m not alone in this. You have been so encouraging that I feel my fears are already leaving…But would appreciate if you could pray for me in that area…thank you… Charmaine

  45. Wow this was a perfectly timed find!
    Thank you so much for your advice with this post!
    I have always been in the silent prayer squad. I am naturally a shy person so the thought of speaking in front of others terrifies me, let alone pouring my heart out in verbal prayer!
    I have begun to pray aloud when I am in the car alone, feels kinda weird but I often find that is when I am at my most open with the lord.
    I asked god during my churches monthly Friday evening prayer meeting to give me the courage to speak out, for the words to form and come out instead of a flow of gibberish, emotional gush.
    Boy did he deliver and the words rushed out of me in a clear, heartfelt burst of praise & thanks to god! Certainly a moment I will always remember and something I want to build on!

  46. Wow! I thank God for leading me to this site. Thank you to everyone else for sharing and bravely admitting your fears. We are not alone in this world. 🙂 I have also found myself in situations where I have to climb out of my shell and it is not easy, especially when English is not my first language. My voice trembles and I start to shake and eventually I break down in tears. I get so overwhelmed. This has been my nightmare since school. Public speaking, reading out loud and praying in front of people felt like a curse. I would rather get 0% on my rapport card that doing any of that. And now being older I can only pray in front of my children and not even my own husband. How horrible and sad to always feel that one can not do it.

    Thank you Natasha for your tips. I am definitely going to work on it. I pray that everyone living in fear, of praying out loud in public, would be blessed and that we can become prayer warriors. God is good!

  47. I didn’t read all the comments. Those I did sound like they have marriages where both parents are believers. What about those who have a spouse and older children who are non believers. With 5 at the table and only myself trying to mould my 11 yo who says she believes in God….. it feels awkward to try to pray at the table. Thanks for reading. Marion

  48. Thank you, God, for leading me to this site. Praying out loud has truly been one of the greatest challenges in my walk with Jesus. I can write my thoughts, think through prayer, but the idea of saying prayers in front of others is so difficult. Adding to my challenge is listening to other who pray so beautifully and effortlessly. I am in awe of their beautiful, heartfelt, well-articulated prayers, but then panic sets in when I realize that there is an expectation for me to pray out loud also. I do believe God is pushing me in this area so stumbling upon this article at this time is not coincidental. One of the biggest takeaways from this article for me is the idea that there is no strict model that I have to follow, to pray out loud by myself, and to keep my prayer short and conversational. I’m starting this today, right now. Thank You!

  49. Its great knowing that Im not the only one being nervous when praying out loud mostly in church.Il be attending a Chain prayer after 10 days from now.. please pray for me that I will grow stronger in prayers and also fulfilling God’s will.

  50. This is so good. We are going through this with our middle school daughter and I run into it often with adults! I think your suggestions are spot-on and I’m hoping they can be an encouragement and help to my 12 year old.

  51. Dear Fellow Friends,
    After breaking down in despair about my fear and inability to express myself in praying out loud, I asked God to help me and He brought me to this site. Through so many years of desiring yet failing to make a change, I had almost given up hope of doing better. I felt so isolated and ashamed of discussing this with anyone.
    Thank you, for each encouragement and suggestion to help me on this path. I know God is faithful to see me through to make this change. During my reading of the comments I was so moved that I prayed out loud a few times for the way God was answering my prayer. Please pray for me.

  52. I find it extremely difficult praying audibly in front people. It’s a struggle to collect my thoughts, and I get scared that people will think my prayers are not good. I find it easy speaking to front of people, it’s just, corporate prayer I find very difficult. I will put your very helpful tips into practice and to try and overcome this. Many, many thanks Natasha and may God bless you.

  53. In the bible study that I attend, they ALWAYS ask me to pray..and I HATE it!! It feels so awkward..in my private time, it feels natural, but when I am in front of others, it’s extremely uncomfortable. It’s so bad that I can’t even concentrate on the bible study discussion because I’m thinking…”I hope they don’t ask me to pray.” Tonight, one of the associate pastors asked me to pray, and it took me by surprise, because I was certain he was going to pray. So I prayed and I feel like I totally bombed it..I was sweating and walked out with haste to my car..embarrassed. I immediately felt the need to find a remedy to my unique situation..so I searched “Fear of public praying” and this website appeared. I am truly comforted to know that others (including pastors) experience this same fear, but I am encouraged by the 9 points listed above. Thank you Natasha for being obedient to the spirit…the seed you planted with have a lasting effect in ways that you can’t even imagine. God bless you my sister.

  54. I feel real lucky to find this website. I cant ecën find sleep when i think of the times i have freaked out in prayer. Its so painful but this sharing strengthens me to practice more . Have lately bren thinking of joining church choir or find a prayer partner. Thanks for sharing.

  55. Edelaine Saturay

    Thanks for this.. im always struggles praying in the crowd and i feel dissapointed in myself.. and now I try to do some of your suggestion. i hope i overcome this..Please Pray for me .GOD BLESS ?

  56. Thank you for building up our confidence. Before some years i was praying too nicely in front of church people but after sone time i started feeling that i am not praying in a pleasing way and suddenly my confidence gone in myself. I faced this situation ehen pastor told me to pray and i prayed too but in a dull, weak and shivered voice. I keep praying too god that give me confidence again. May i overcome this situation fast.

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