toward application / prayer

With this post, I want to start a random, but regular series that speaks straight to the heart of applying faith in our life. Think: practical, ministerial advice on common matters. Not comprehensive answers, of course, but concise, clear, and candid footholds for your climb.
 
Matter: “I don’t feel like praying. I don’t have the words.
 
Means: Make an appointment with God. Set a specific time you’ll meet with him each day. Keep the appointment; put it in granite. Guard that time! Even if you only sit in silence before him, your mindful presence before him is prayer.
Keep a brief, written/typed list, or journal, of people and matters you want to pray about. Visit that list early in the day, every day. Writing it down is the first step to working it up. just reviewing it gets you halfway there in prayer.
Silently pray a single sentence prayer in your head as you converse/relate with people throughout the day. Ask a blessing on them. Thank God for something. Let what’s happening in them, or what you observe about them, prompt word prayer for them and yourself.