Monday, March 10, 2014

Sunday's Prayer Priorities

At yesterday morning's worship service at Faith Bible Church, we tried a new way to involve the congregation in corporate prayer. We were looking for something that might also help people to focus in on some of our church's prayer priorities and remember them throughout the week.

Just before the sermon, I asked a couple of the leaders of our small congregation (Don McGuire and Allen Nelson) to join me up front. I had printed off the prayers and given them copies beforehand. We then explained to the congregation that one of us would read a specific prayer and then we would have a period of silence (15-20 seconds) where we could all lift these appeals to God together. We believe it worked very well and so I thought I'd pass it on to you this morning. It might be something you would like to try in your church. Or, perhaps more immediately relevant, you'd like to lift up to our Lord right now these same prayers.

1. Denny prays, “Dear Lord Jesus, we pray this morning for Christians throughout the world who are being persecuted for their faith in You, the Savior.  We pray for mercy and justice for them, their families, and their church congregations. We pray also that their testimony would have tremendous effect.”

2. Don prays, “We pray for the peace of Jerusalem.  We pray for peace and liberty in Ukraine, in Egypt, in Sudan, and in other places so deeply troubled by violence.  We pray for the gospel to be preached with great power in all nations today and throughout this week.”

3. Allen prays, “We pray this morning in Your Name, dear Lord Jesus, for a spiritual awakening in the United States.  Lord, we ask You to awaken Your Church and help believers serve You with a whole heart. Please make our land one that again promotes and protects life, marriage, and religious freedom.”

4. Denny prays, “Our heavenly Father, we pray together as a church family right now for our sister Harriet.  Make Your strength and joy strong in her life. Please touch her body and spirit with healing. And, for all of the others in our fellowship who are enduring serious trials regarding their health, please show Your mercy to them in abundance.”

5. Don prays, “Father, we ask that You minister in great power through all of the missionaries that our church supports.  Give them vision and health and perseverance.  Minister in their families and shine Your light through them to many. Please grant them all of the financial and prayer support they need.”

6. Allen prays, “As a church family this morning, we come together to praise You, Lord, for Your goodness and faithfulness and power.  We thank You for Your Word and for the marvelous gift of salvation through Christ. We thank You also for the promise of heaven and all of its eternal joys, given freely to everyone who believes in You.”

7. Denny prays, “Dear Father in heaven, our desire is for Your kingdom to come on earth and that means in us too.  Help us to overcome those ‘easily besetting’ sins in our lives. Free us from cowardice and worldliness and unbelief.  Move us to become better Bible students and then more consistent doers of what we learn in Your Word.”

8. Don prays, “We ask this morning for fresh blessings upon Faith Bible Church.  Please give wisdom and courage to her leaders.  Give us love for one another and help us to carefully avoid gossip and critical spirit and division.  Help us to grow spiritually and to minister effectively in Your Name in all we say and do.”

9. Allen prays, “Dear Father, we ask You to guide America’s leaders in truth and righteousness.  Protect them but enlighten them in Your ways.  We pray the same for judges and others in positions of power.  Cause their hearts to seek Your will and to humbly serve the One and Holy God.”