Creating a culture of prayer: P.R.A.Y DECK

Prayer can feel tricky or tough. 

Developed in partnership with 24/7, the P.R.A.Y Deck brings a shot of creativity to your student ministry with ideas to help you Pause and be still. Rejoice. Ask for help and Yield to God in prayer. The P.R.A.Y deck helps students seek God in brand new ways.

Here are the four categories/suits and how you can use them to create a culture of prayer.


We all need to start by knowing who we are and whose we are. Not only do we become more aware of who God is, we become more aware of who he created us to be. Without knowing and being in relationship with God, we’re just trying in our own strength. By pausing we acknowledge that we can’t do this on our own and we don’t want to either.

The theologian Henry Nouwen says “Without solitude it is virtually impossible to live a spiritual life… we do not take the spiritual life seriously if we do not set aside some time to be with God and listen to him.” 

“The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul.” Psalm 23:1-3

How can you apply the ‘Pause’ principle with your students? Use the following questions or activities: 

  • Breathe Deep. Inhale: Welcome the Holy Spirit. Exhale: Say, "Jesus, I'm here". 
  • When or where have you noticed God's presence in the last 24 hours?
  • Read a Psalm slowly, asking God to highlight one word to you for today.
  • Write a brief timeline of your life. How was God present at key moments?
  • Put a daily reminder in your phone to pause and pray the Lord's Prayer.


The Lord wants to have a conversation with students. He says he already knows what we need before we ask it.  But he wants us to ask because he wants a relationship. Asking is about moving from asking God to fulfill our needs to asking God to fulfill both our needs and the needs of others.

Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; he who seeks finds; and to him who knocks, the door will be opened.

Which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? So if you who are evil know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! Matthew 7:7-11

How can you apply the ‘Pause’ principle with your students? Use the following questions or activities from the P.R.A.Y deck: 

  • Who in your family especially needs God's help today? Pray for them by name.
  • Asking for themselves: Tell God your greatest worry, and ask for peace
  • Walk around your neighbourhood, and ask God to highlight people and places to pray for
  • Read the news, choose one story and ask God to help.
  • Open your phone and pray for the person you most recently messaged.


The gospel is good news, isn’t it?! That is why we’re here and why we bang the drum so loudly and do mission and worship, because it is good news!! It’s more than good grades, social standing and western comforts, our deepest joy is Jesus and what he has done. 

Having a ‘rejoicing’ culture is a worshipful culture that celebrates our redemption found in Jesus. Discovering his joy means students find gratitude and thankfulness in every area of life. But sometimes we can get distracted and lose sight of that. Sometimes we can forget to celebrate the incredible news of the Gospel and we just need reminding ourselves that it is something worth rejoicing! 

“Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy.” 1 Peter 1:8

How can you apply the ‘Rejoice’ principle with your students? Use the following questions or activities from the P.R.A.Y deck: 

  • Thank God for the most recent prayer He's answered- big or small!
  • Write a list of 10 different ways that you are blessed.
  • Take a photo of something that inspires you to praise God.
  • Use your gifts: do something you’re good at today to glorify God.


Yielding is submitting yourself to the lord’s will. Yielding is repentance. More than just engaging in a worship set, yielding has to do with finances, future plans, relationships and trusting God in the waiting. 

Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Romans 12:2

How can you apply the ‘Rejoice’ principle with your students? Use the following questions or activities from the P.R.A.Y deck:  

  • Surrender your money to God today. How does He want you to spend it?
  • Surrender your plans to God today. How does He want you to use your time?
  • How have you turned away from God recently? Wash your hands, say sorry and receive God's forgiveness.
  • Is God asking you to fast anything to spend more time with Him?
  • Is there an area of your life where you feel you are waiting? Say yes to God’s timing today.

God has a prayer adventure prepared for you. Think about how you can use the P.R.A.Y values and apply them to your ministry.  Pause often, Rejoice always, Ask boldly and yield Willingly. 


Paul Eaton

Regional Team Leader

Paul found faith just before going to uni and became passionate about reaching his mates as a student. He loves seeing students find home in church and has a heart for welcoming international students.

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