Have you ever been chatting with someone who says “Would you mind praying about [this] for me?!” Being in ministry or not, the opportunity and privilege to pray for someone is always available in our messed-up world.
Recently, the Lord has been convicting my heart about my response to this type of request. It is so very easy for me to respond with “Absolutely, I will pray!”, “Praying for you!”, or something like that. The Lord has challenged me however to notice how often I say these things and more so, to examine how often I actually follow through with these promises to pray.
I recall back to a few years ago when I needed surgery to fix up some issues I had been experiencing since having our son Gray. There were moments when the pain I experienced was more intense than others and in those moments I called on my husband to pray. Each time my husband would come into our bedroom, hold my hand and call on our children to join him in praying for their Mommy. Their prayers presented beautiful opportunities for me to catch a glimpse of their heart- they wanted to see their Mommy better- and they genuinely believed in the God they were calling on to fix her. They also did not hesitate to pray in that very moment; no empty promises to pray at a later time.
My intentions are always good when I agree to bring a request to The Lord in prayer; but I would be dishonest to say I ALWAYS follow through. I began to ask The Lord how I can change this forgetfulness and He spoke to me through the willingness of my beautiful prayer-ready children.
To confirm His speaking to me, a good friend texted me recently and asked “How are you doing, my friend?” I shared with her a specific request. Within a few minutes she texted me back a beautifully written prayer. I can’t tell you how encouraged I was by her willingness to pause and pray for me.
To help with my prayer endeavours I have also been using an app for my iPhone called “Echo Prayer”. This app allows me to add prayer requests, set timers and there is even a section where I am able to journal about answers to specific prayer requests! Now, in addition to me praying the moment I am asked, I am also able to genuinely agree to pray continually as time goes on.
Will you take up the challenge with me? When someone asks you to pray, will you pause and offer a prayer on their behalf in that very moment, however that may look (laying a hand on their shoulder and praying for them in person, texting/Facebook/emailing them a prayer, or praying over the phone) and then be prepared to pray for their request continually thereafter? I believe if we all agreed to do this, not only would we all grow closer to The Lord, but those asking us to pray would feel encouraged and blessed by our willingness to pause and intercede on their behalf.
Will you join me?
With all prayer and petition pray at all times in the Spirit, and with this in view, be on the alert with all perseverance and petition for all the saints.
Jesus, thank You for the privilege to pray for others as they request. I pray for confidence and growth in this area of my life and for more opportunities to bless others by praying for their needs and requests. In Your name, Amen.