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Posts Tagged ‘praying for others’

Overwhelmed by your prayer list?

I have what I call, my “refrigerator” list. It began as a small list of people that I wanted to be reminded to pray for, more often than “specific” prayer times.  I would see this list on the refrigerator as I passed by a hundred times a day, and I’d lift them up in what A.W. Tozer calls “countless thought prayers.”

As time went on, names kept getting added to the list until today the page is covered, and names are written in margins, along the edge and scribbled even between other names. And I, at times, am overwhelmed by it all.

How do I pray for all these people? What about all the others with the same or similar situations? And, what do I say when I don’t know what to say…?

One day as I was looking at the list I began thinking about the “list” as a whole. I thought, “There must be others with the same dilemma. How would I tell them to pray?” And this prayer was born…

Prayer List Prayer

            Father, I lift up to You today, Your servants of the Kingdom. I lift up those who are doing battle – those who are fighting the good fight; those who are running the race, who are staying the course.

            I lift up those who are striving on to perfection, those who are children in the faith, and those who are unaware, or worse, uncaring.

            I lift them up by name:

(Look at your list. Read off the names, remembering and praying for each person’s need as you know it.)

I lift them up by occupation:

(As you’re looking at your list, pray for others of their occupation. For instance, if someone on your list is a nurse, lift up other nurses, members of the medical field, and those for whom they will be caring this day.  If someone is a teacher, lift up teachers of all kinds and their students, etc.)

            I lift them up by affliction:

(If someone is sick, lift up others with the same sickness. If someone is traveling, lift up others who are traveling for business or pleasure. If someone is an unbeliever, lift up other unbelievers.)

            Father, as I see faces with each name, I know that you see hearts, spirits and souls. Touch them I pray.  Speak to their hearts and meet their needs. Strengthen their spirits, and comfort their souls. May they hear Your call and come to know the Joy of the Lord.

            Father, I pray that in all we say and in all that we do, Your Name may be praised and glorified.

            In Jesus’ Name,

                                    Amen.

 

 

 

 

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“I’ll Be Praying for You”

Have you ever told someone, “I’ll be praying for you” or “I’ll put you on my prayer list”?

What about, “I’ll be thinking about you…” or (and I really hope not) “I’ll send ‘happy thoughts’ your way…”? (Sorry to tell you, but that won’t help a bit!)

If you’ve ever told someone, “I’ll be praying for you” then I’ve got a challenge for you – why not do it right then! Instead of saying “I’ll be praying for you” say “Can I pray with you now?”

“Whoa,” you might say, “I can’t pray in public! I don’t know what to say.”

Why not? You’re just talking to God… about the person… for whom… you just told that you would! What’s the difference in doing that with them and doing it alone?

Try this – copy this prayer and put it in your purse or billfold and pull it out whenever you need it. You’ll be amazed at how much they appreciate it (and after a while, you won’t need a written prayer!)

Dear God, You know that I’m not real good at this, but I just want to thank you for allowing me to pray for __________.

God, we don’t always know how to pray, but then, we don’t have to; You alone are God. You know _________’s needs – the needs that are apparent, [name them if you want] and the needs that lie beneath the surface. And You know what will bring You Glory. We pray that You will bring those things together.

God, we just want to take this brief moment to share our friendship before You, and pray that You will bless that friendship, and our service to You.

In Jesus’ Name – Amen.

 

Now just think… wouldn’t you love for someone to pray that with or for you today?

I just did…

I may not know your name – but rest assured – God knows your name. I prayed for you, where you are this morning – it’s 6:30am on a  Monday as I write this… that can be exciting or tough. Some of you are dealing with a death in your family today, and some are facing extreme illness – either in yourself, or family or friends. I lift you up.

Many of you are caring for children, or parents, or more likely – both. I know from experience how difficult that can be. I pray for strength, and more importantly sometimes, wisdom – “just what in the world, God, do You want me to do here…”

I know, I’ve cried those very words.

I pray for pastors, pastor’s wives, (or spouses) and church staff. I pray for teachers, staff and support personnel. I pray for students, employers, employees, the self-employed, and the un-employed. God is there.

And I pray for your homes. God knows your every need. I’m often known to say, “Everybody in the world, thinks that everybody else in the world, has it ‘all together’ – when in fact – none of us do!”

Every single one of us feels alone at times; every single one of us is afraid at times; every single one of us needs God. And God created us to need each other.

I’ve prayed for you… you pray for one another – and don’t be afraid to let them hear you pray…

Amen.

 

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As I continue to sort through old devotionals, I found this one from 2009.

 

How does intercessory prayer overcome free will?

 

I spent the morning praying for a friend’s child and their struggles. I prayed that “today” would be a good day, because I know (from long personal experience) that that is how you survive the struggle. You pray for “today” and then tomorrow you pray for “today” as well… and you keep on praying for “today” until that particular battle becomes a skirmish, and that skirmish becomes something that you talk about in the past tense, while praying for the conflict that the new day brings (because every day brings one of its own, as Matthew 6:34 teaches.)

I prayed this morning for a loved one with a struggle, and for a friend whose husband has cancer – very serious cancer… I prayed for her strength and courage “today.”

I prayed for some I know who have made poor choices, that are now being covered by lies and deception, and for others who are overwhelmed by their responsibilities, and for those who are just plain afraid.

But, I kept coming back to “how does intercessory prayer overcome free will?” If my friend’s child chooses to turn away; if my own loved one chooses to react; if my friend chooses to give in, or allows fear to take control of her life… how does my intercessory prayer change anything?

How does intercessory prayer “make” someone tell the truth or give someone a way out, or keep someone from fear?

And the answer is – I don’t really know. All I know for sure is – there have been times in my own life when the only way I made it through was in knowing that someone was praying for me. I remember distinctly driving down the interstate (I can picture it in my mind, even today) and thinking, “Georgia and Ruby said that they were praying for me… that will get me through today…”

So, maybe I should let them know that they are being prayed for… Maybe that’s where intercessory prayer gets its power. Maybe just being reminded that even if you’re powerless; even if you’re the one on “the stretcher” that you still have friends that are willing to carry you to Jesus, tear off the rooftop, and lower you down to Him… Maybe that’s where the power really is.

We just need to allow Him to deal with the sin or the heartache or the pain or the fear. I don’t have to (and in fact, can’t) “fix it.” But He can, and will… I only have to pray.

I still don’t know how intercessory prayer overcomes free will. But then, I don’t have to understand – I only have to pray.

 

And Father, I do pray, today… and leave it in Your hands. In Jesus’ Name – Amen.

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