I’m about to step on some toes for a minute, including my own.
When was the last time you genuinely asked someone how you could pray for him or her, and meant it? What about asking a complete stranger?
I’m not talking about crazy Bible beating here, but sometimes, we look at someone who voices their hardship, tell them we are praying for them, and go about our day. When we ask someone how they are, do we really want to know the answer, or are we just being polite?
Sometimes, we gossip in the form of a prayer request, and sometimes we genuinely gather in the midst of an event or tragedy.
What if, we actually took the time to really examine our prayer lives?
We live in an angry world. With all that is going on in the media, people are bickering back and forth. We, as a society, are angrier than ever.
I know what I am writing here is easier said than done, and let’s admit it: evangelism is sometimes terrifying.
Trust me, I’m not only an introvert, but I’m an awkward introvert who panics at the very thought of having to make small talk. What I have learned is that there are small, doable ways that we, as brothers and sisters in Christ, can go about caring and praying for each other.
My daughter and I have made a deal. Anytime we go out to eat, we tell our server we are about to pray for our meal, and we ask if there is any specific reason we can pray for them. We always get positive reactions, but I want to share one story in particular that happened a few weeks ago.
One afternoon, we went to a local restaurant; our server was a young girl named Rachel. Upon receiving our food, we told her we were going to pray for our meal, and asked if there was anything she would like us to pray for her. The waitress said, “My friend back home just passed away.” As she held back tears, she genuinely thanked us and said “no one takes time to pray for anyone anymore.”
She was so moved, that she shared it with her husband who came into the restaurant during our meal. Together they decided to pay for half of our meal. We don’t do these things to get free meals, but because people are genuinely hurting in our society today. Why don’t we take the time to ask anymore?
- Fight for those who can’t (or won’t) fight for themselves.
As for me, I vow that I will not sin against the Lord by ceasing to pray for you. (1 Samuel 12:23 HCSB)
Thank God I had praying parents and grandparents in my life. Throughout my younger years, living a Godly lifestyle wasn’t necessarily my top priority, yet my parents and grandparents continually and fervently prayed for me.
I was saved at 10, but didn’t enter into a true relationship with God until the age of 28. I credit my family’s persistence in prayer for the change in my life.
If you look around, you may see a friend or family member struggling. They can’t seem to get passed what they are going through.
We can fight for those that can’t or won’t fight for themselves. We see examples of this throughout the Bible:
Abraham pleaded with God for the people of Sodom in Genesis 18.
Moses pleaded with God plenty of times for Israel.
Even Jesus interceded for those who persecuted Him on the Cross as He was being put to a brutal death.
It’s our job to pray for others, just as we pray for ourselves.
- Stay in tune with the Holy Spirit.
Have you ever had that feeling, like something just stirred up inside of you? That very well could be the Holy Spirit.
If someone is on your mind constantly, it might be God telling you to reach out, or at least say a quick prayer for them.
Pray at all times in the Spirit with every prayer and request, and stay alert in this with all perseverance and intercession for all the saints. (Ephesians 6:18 HCSB)
There have been times I had someone on my mind, and I sent a simple text or made a phone call. The response is often “How did you know?”
The power of the Holy Spirit can be amazing, if we just stay in tune.
- Get over yourself.
Harsh I know, but honestly it’s the truth (for me included). We get so caught up in us, that we tend to overlook things that might be happening right in front of us.
Uncomfortable? Get over it.
When God prompts, we move. Remember: you are not responsible for the result. Just be obedient to what God is telling you, and let Him do the rest.
You might say, “But I don’t like praying out loud,” and neither do I. God doesn’t compare prayers, nor does He care how eloquent your prayers are. He is just moved by the fact that you are reaching out to Him.
Pray constantly. (1 Thessalonians 5:17 HCSB)
Give it a try, great things will happen.
In these uncertain times, caring and prayer is extremely critical. I believe we are prayer warriors and have a special assignment. We are called to reach out and we are called to pray.
We sometimes underestimate the power of prayer, what it can do for us, and what it can do for those around us.
Let me challenge you to become proactive. Let’s join together in our calling, and reach out in love.
Let’s get outside of ourselves and watch God move.