December 23, 2016
READ: Romans 15:30-33
I urge you in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to join in my struggle by praying to God for me (v.30).
At times I’m hesitant to invite others to pray for me. If, for example, I say, “Please pray for me, I’m experiencing a spiritual attack in a certain area,” do I sound arrogant? Do I sound as if I think I’ve done something so important the enemy’s trying to stop me? Am I possibly calling something a spiritual attack that’s actually a consequence of something I’ve done or haven’t done? Will friends and ministry partners grow weary of repeated requests for prayer? Are my prayer needs too personal to share?
While it’s healthy to approach prayer with humility and discretion, too much introspection can hinder us from approaching God at all—privately or corporately.
A dear friend wrote this to me: “It’s a gift when friends entrust me with their struggles and let me see their victories. As I walk with them and intercede on their behalf, I get to see the power of God move and provide in a way that is almost miraculous. Honestly, it would be ‘easier’ some days to be surrounded by people who are not in need, but then I would miss the greatest blessing of all—authentic people who are waking up every day and doing life the best they can.”
In Romans 15:30, the apostle Paul models the importance of reaching out for prayer when he writes to his brothers and sisters in Jesus, urging them “in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ to join in my struggle by praying to God for me. Do this because of your love for me, given to you by the Holy Spirit.”
Rather than fearing that we’re imposing, let’s recognize the gift we’re giving when we invite others to participate in Galatians 6:2, which says, “Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ.”
365-day plan: 1 Peter 3:1-22
Read Ephesians 6:18 and note how Paul instructs us to pray for others.
How does praying for others affect you? Why is it important for us to be open in sharing our prayer needs with trusted fellow believers in Jesus?