When flying, before take off, you will always hear the flight attendant remind parents and caregivers to put their oxygen mask on first before helping their child or dependent with their mask. The reason they do this is to remind parents and caregivers that without their life source of oxygen they cannot help those that depend on them.
In the same way, we must first make ourselves pure and blameless before God before going to him with prayer requests. One way to do this is through the ACTS prayer technique that someone taught me years ago. “A” is for adoration, telling God what you adore about him, his characteristics, what makes him your heavenly Father. “C” is for confession, the admission of sin and turning away from sin. “T” is for thanks, the expression of gratitude to God for all the blessings he provides, including some of the seemingly yucky stuff. Lastly, “S” is for supplication, the requests we ask of God, for ourselves and others.
Notice supplication comes last. Why is that? Everything leading up to “S” is to make us pure and blameless and to give glory where glory is due.
After we have prayed through ACTS our hearts will feel more ready and prepared to touch the lives of others and to be God’s instrument. So, the next time you try to help someone back on their feet, get on your knees and put on the oxygen mask of adoration, confession, thanks, and supplication.