Intercessory prayer is the purifying bath into which the individual
and the community must enter every day.
and the community must enter every day.
Before You Ask
And when you pray, do not keep on babbling like pagans, for they think they will be heard because of their many words. Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him. (Matthew 6:7-8)
Many people think their prayers won’t work if they don’t utter them clearly enough, or fail to explain to God exactly what they mean, or don’t speak loudly enough to him with sufficient earnestness. But when this happens, prayer becomes so exaggerated that our Savior even forbids it.
Obviously Jesus does not want to discourage us from praying. His point is that when we pray we must have a sense of proportion. Once we have prayed, we must be quiet. We need to be like the farmer who has sown his seed. Help will come only when you are quiet in faith. Also in your sickness or with other needs, learn to be still and look to the Kingdom of God.
We can share our needs with the Father in a few words, without making a fuss, and rest assured that God already knows what we need and what he will do to help us. We don’t have to explain our requests in great detail to God, or try and make quite sure that he knows our needs. God knows about even the smallest matters and takes them straight into his heart. We can turn to him by glancing Heavenward, with no words at all. We can do this even when we pray about something concrete and tangible, or about something that specifically troubles us. We may realize that what we thought we needed is actually not necessary and that we can find a way right in the midst of how things are now.
This doesn’t mean that we just let things happen – as if everything will come of its own accord without our longing for it. Nor should we just cast a brief and hurried request at God’s feet. When this happens, we too easily lose sight of God, assume that everything comes to us without his help, and we forget to thank him. Then we cease to have a believing heart and are consequently not true children of God.
Jesus said, “Before you ask him.” Therefore we do need to make our requests known to him, otherwise many things will not be given that could have been given. It never displeases God when we come to him with our heartfelt requests. A real child asks for everything, knowing God has an ear for him. We should bring all our burdens and needs to him, for at the very least this helps to make us ever more aware that in all things God is the giver.
God always has our interest in mind. He carries our various needs with fatherly concern, eagerly waiting for us to come to him. He has not forgotten us. And when we feel tempted to think so, then all the more we should remember that he knows it all and cares for us. In fact, he knows much more about us and our needs than we do. Simple, childlike prayer is enough to move his heart, give you something out of the fullness of his compassion, and save you from all sorts of fear and trouble.
(Johann Christoph Blumhardt)
Request a prayer and pray for others
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Prolife Prayers for Each Day of the Week
Rescue the Preborn: Sunday
O God of Beginnings, you are the Creator of all life. As we begin this week, be near us as we unite with our preborn brothers and sisters who are scheduled for death. May you by your Holy Ghost and by the voice of your church lead your people to rescue from death the innocent children and bring those who participate in their death to true repentance that they may taste of your goodness and mercy; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Spiritual Warfare: Monday
Almighty and Powerful God, drive all evil spirits away from the innocent preborn children and from the killing centers where their destruction is planned. Overcome evil with good in the hearts of those who reject your truth and who have believed the lies of the evil one who would say that good is evil and evil is good. Rebuke the enemy for the sake of innocent children and for your sake, Oh Lord; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Kingdom Prayer: Tuesday
Oh Great King of Kings, let your kingdom come on Earth as it is in Heaven for the sanctity of all human life. You have said that your kingdom is righteousness, peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. Where there is unrighteousness let righteousness come to bear, where there is hostility, cause your peace to reign supreme, where there is sorrow, bring joy in the hearts of people. Lead us into your unshakable and everlasting kingdom in which you reign forever and ever that truly the kingdoms of this world will become the kingdoms of our God; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
For Forgiveness: Wednesday
Oh God of mercy and grace, as you hung on the hard wooden cross, you asked that those who were putting you to death might be forgiven. Please, oh Lord, help us to offer that same forgiveness to those who participate in abortion, euthanasia, the destruction of embryonic life, and who by other means violate the sanctity of human life, that in all things the world would know the height, the depth, the breadth, and width of your love, your mercy and your grace; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
Restoration of the Holiness and Protection of the Womb: Thursday
Oh Holy God, our rock and our fortress, you used the womb of Mary to be a tabernacle for the dwelling of the Incarnation, where the Holy Son of God was to be nurtured and protected. You created the womb of woman that the miracle of human life might be nurtured and protected. Many women have been deceived to believe that their womb is not a place of holy protection for a human life, but that it is simply another appendage of their body. Renew and restore your purpose and will concerning the womb of all women throughout the Earth, that you may be glorified; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
For Governments: Friday
Oh Ruler of the Nations, many of the kings of the Earth have set themselves against you; they rebel against your rule. Yet you have set your king on your holy hill of Zion so that in every local, state, provincial, and national government you would rule in the midst of your enemies. We pray that you would strengthen and uphold those rulers that, by your grace, are following your ways and purpose. Make your enemies a footstool for your feet, that all people in all nations would kiss the Son, so they may know that happy are those who take refuge in you; through Jesus Christ our Lord, forever and ever. Amen.
For an End to Abortion: Saturday
Oh God, who is the Beginning and the End, hear our prayers as we cry out to you to end the merciless shedding of innocent blood in our nation and throughout the world. Through death you have conquered death and through your life we experience eternal and everlasting life. Cause life to spring forth in the hearts of all people and bring forth a love and respect for life that will dominate our culture. May your kingdom and church apprehend and overtake the culture of death that has prevailed through deceit and selfishness; may the seed of the woman crush the head of the serpent through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.
(Priests for Life)
Received: August 16, 2018
American Couple Believing “Evil Is A Make-Believe Concept” Bike Through Territory Near Afghan Border. ISIS Stabs Them To Death.
Adopt a Terrorist for Prayer
I pray for irresistible pursuit by God’s Spirit: “Holy Spirit, relentlessly pursue my terrorist to the depths of his hideout, that he may not escape your grace.”
I pray for powerful demonstrations of God’s grace: “Lord, expose my terrorist to the precious testimony of Jesus’s followers.”
I pray for vulnerability: “Dear God, strip from my terrorist all his defenses that he may turn to Jesus
for hope and salvation.”
I pray for conviction of sin and sense of shame: “Jesus, confront and overwhelm my terrorist with his shameful deeds and sinful nature until he becomes desperate for righteousness from you.”
I pray for God’s honor: “God, may the redemption of my terrorist clearly display your character and glory.”
I pray against spiritual blindness and bondage: “Lord, release my terrorist from Satan’s grip and open him to sense and know your grace in Jesus.”
(American Anglican Council)
Received: August 16, 2018
Praying for the persecuted church in America
1. Pray that whatever their circumstances, God will give persecuted Christians the right words.
In Ephesians 6:19-20, Paul asks fellow believers to “Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains. Pray that I may declare it fearlessly, as I should.”
2. Pray that persecuted Christians will understand and find peace in the sufficiency of God’s grace, even in their weaknesses.
While facing physical threat, especially, Christians may be put into scenarios where they must make instantaneous choices under great pressure. For this reason, we pray for persecuted church to understand the promises of 2 Corinthians 12:9 which says, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.”
3. Pray that Christians facing hardship will draw from a source of power larger than themselves.
Christians facing persecution often have very little control over their lives, including their own safety and health. They often battle against government accusers that do not provide them the right to a fair trial or representation. Because of this, it’s critical to pray that believers in trying circumstances are able to see, like Paul, that their hardship helps them rely on a God who is far more powerful than them. “For we were so utterly burdened beyond out strength that we despaired of life itself. Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death.” Paul said in 2 Corinthians 1:7-9, “But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead.”
4. Pray God would be present with persecuted Christians in their hardship, protecting them according to his will. In Matthew 26:39, Jesus himself faced an unjust trial. Even he prayed to God, “My Father, if it is possible let this cup pass from me,” which is the first part of his prayer that inspires us to ask God to deliver persecuted Christians from harm. At the same time, the second part of Jesus’s prayer goes hand-in-hand with praying this request, “Yet not my will, but yours be done.” Part of our prayer can be that God will deliver Christians from chains, as he did for Peter in Acts 12. But we also pray that if God does not see fit to supernaturally intervene in such a way, that we will intervene to strengthen these believers no matter the outcome.
5. Pray their witness would inspire those who seek to harm them. In Luke 6:27-31, the apostle said, “But I say to you who hear, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” When Christians are able to maintain perspective like this, their actions are often noticed by those who persecute them. In the case of Paul and Silas, in Acts 16:25, their behavior – praying and singing and praise in the face of hardship – were observed by both their jailers and other prisoners. In acting out of faith despite their circumstances, they were able to share the gospel with their captors in an opportune moment, and the jailer and his family came to believe, as well (Acts 16:34).
Received: August 14, 2018
Prayer for Nicaragua
We pray for the church to both proclaim the gospel and seek justice for the oppressed.
We pray for a righteous government that seeks the good of its impoverished people.
We pray for gospel-centered unity among the various Christian denominations.
Received: August 13, 2018
A Prayer Of Self-Knowledge
Take the veil from my eyes, Lord, that I may see beyond my nose.
Take the veil from my eyes, Lord, that I might see through the fog of lies.
Take the veil from my eyes, Lord, that I might see your presence – so close.
Take the veil from my eyes, Lord, that I might see myself rightly; others too.
Take the veil from my eyes, Lord, that I might see the stranger rightly, and be done with otherism.
Take the veil from my eyes, Lord, that I might see my way to mercy, compassion, and love.
Received: August 13, 2018
Call to Prayer Fires in California and Elsewhere
Please join me in praying for those who are suffering from the fires raging in California and elsewhere. Pray for the many who have lost their homes and businesses, for those whose family members have died in the infernos, and for those who either have lost or continue to risk their lives to fight these fires – some of whom have traveled thousands of miles from other countries to do so.
Compassionate Lord, we pray for those who have been devastated by recent natural disasters. We remember those who have lost their lives so suddenly. We hold in our hearts the families forever changed by grief and loss. Bring them consolation and comfort. Surround them with our prayer for strength. Bless those who have survived and heal their memories of trauma and devastation. May they have the courage to face the long road of rebuilding ahead.
We ask your blessing on all those who have lost their homes, their livelihoods, their security, and their hope. Bless the work of relief agencies and those providing emergency assistance, and of those who put their lives between the fires and the rest of us. May their work be guided by the grace and strength that comes from you alone.
Help us to respond with generosity in prayer, in assistance, and in aid to the best of our abilities. Keep those affected on our hearts, even after the crisis is over. We ask this through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
(Adapted from a Jesuit prayer)
(Bishop Eric Menees)
Received: August 10, 2018
A Prayer for the Yazidi People
Yazidis are still being enslaved and sold by ISIS. Reuniting the kidnapped Yazidis with their families and bringing the perpetrators to justice should be a priority of civilized governments worldwide, not only to help stop the persecution and enslavement of Yazidis, but also to defeat jihad.
On a mountain,
And left to die
While the world watches,
A slaughter of innocents.
A landscape of death,
A heartbreak of hunger and thirst,
A graveyard of children.
Oh Yazidi people,
We pray for the hand of God’s mercy
To come to your aid,
To relieve your suffering,
To drive away the evil
That has pursued you
To the top of the world.
Oh people of conscience,
Cry out against holocaust.
Cry out against genocide.
Cry out against hatred.
For God requires us to stand
In the name of justice and freedom:
To oppose terror,
To muster our power and energy
To save the persecuted and oppressed.
We implore You,
Look down upon the suffering
Perpetrated in so many lands
By the hand of wickedness,
By the hand of malevolence,
By the hand of ignorance and sin.
Save the Yazidi.
Rescue all in need.
Bring the light of salvation
To the four corners of the Earth.
(To Bend Light)
Received: August 8, 2018
Prayer For The Kachin People Of Myanmar
We pray for the families of the deceased, that they may be comforted.
We pray for the Churches that it may be strengthened and rooted in the Lord, who is their rock and fortress.
We pray for our Christian brothers and sister; that their faith may be rooted deeply in the Lord: that they may deepen their trust in the Lord who is the horn of our Salvation and our high tower.
We pray for the state of Kachin and for the country of Myanmar – that the Lord of Peace may reign.
Father, we grieve with the families of these brothers in Christ who were arrested and killed in Myanmar. We pray your comfort over the families and that the churches may not be filled with fear, but rather that they will be rooted and strengthened in the Lord, their rock and fortress. You alone are the Lord our God, the maker of Heaven and Earth. We pray that you will deepen their trust in you. May your peace reign over Kachin state and over the nation of Myanmar. In the mighty name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace. Amen.
Received: August 6, 2018
Speak the Name of Andrew Brunson, A Persecuted Brother in Turkey
On July 15, 2016, Christian pastor Andrew Brunson had no idea that a group of Turkish rebels were about to make a choice that would put his own life in serious danger. On this day, a group within the Turkish armed forces attempted to overthrow their government. Over 300 were killed and more than 2,100 were injured before the rebellion was squashed by the State.
In the days and weeks that followed, the Turkish government began their campaign to hunt down and punish anyone who they believed might be disloyal to their regime. First and foremost, the administration blamed a Turkish Muslim cleric named Fethulla Gulen, who lives in Pennsylvania, for spreading teachings they believed inspired the rebellion. Since Gulen was out of reach in the United States, however, they began sweeping up anyone they suspected of being disloyal to the government—particularly religious leaders and Americans.
The New York Times described how this crackdown “swept up tens of thousands of Turks — military officials, police officers, judges, journalists and others — in prosecutions and purges that are wrenching Turkey back to darker eras it had appeared to have left behind.”
Among those taken prisoner were several Americans. They took a chemistry professor, a real estate agent, and a scientist into custody. And they arrested 48-year-old Christian pastor, Andrew Brunson, who had peacefully lived and ministered in Turkey for 23 years.
Since being imprisoned on October 7, 2016, Pastor Brunson was arrested on charges of being disloyal to the Turkish government. And to this day, Pastor Brunson is still been held in a unit with 17 Turkish prisoners—many who are suspected of having religious ties that may link them to the Muslim cleric Gulen.
Pastor Brunson, however, has no ties to Gulen or any Muslim movement for that matter. In fact, until his detention, Pastor Brunson has made it clear he had never even met anyone associated with the Gulen movement.
Instead, Pastor Brunson has been a visible leader in the Christian world throughout his adult life. He graduated from Wheaton College, a Christian college in Illinois, before heading to Trinity Evangelical School in the same state. In Turkey, he publicly served as pastor of the Izmir Resurrection Church, a small protestant congregation of about 25 people.
SPEAK THE NAME OF ANDREW BRUNSON THIS WEEK
Many Christians are calling on believers around the world to speak Andrew’s name. To speak it boldly and deliberately.
To speak it in churches during calls to prayer.
To pass it over prayer chains.
To post it on social media.
To write it in emails to government officials.
To say it in phone calls to the State Department.
But most importantly, please join us in standing with Brunson’s family and home church in lifting the name of Andrew Brunson to the God he serves.
We believe God is able to turn around these difficult circumstances and use them—in ways that may surprise us—for great kingdom good.
Received: August 3, 2018
A Prayer for Persecuted Christians
Sovereign God, we worship you and we acknowledge that you know all of those who suffer in your name.
We remember those who are imprisoned for their faith and ask that they would join with the Apostle Paul to see that even though they remain captive, their chains have furthered the gospel, not frustrated it.
May they inspire and embolden their fellow believers to speak the word of God more courageously and fearlessly.
God of all comfort, for those who are tortured both in body and mind, give them the grace to endure and to see their suffering as part of following in Christ’s footsteps.
Merciful God, for those asked to pay the ultimate price; who are martyred because of their love for you, may they truly know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the fellowship of sharing in his sufferings, becoming like him in his death.
Father God, for those who are widowed and orphaned may they know the comfort that comes from your promised presence even when they walk through the valley.
May they be strengthened by your Spirit, enabling them to rejoice with the psalmist as they proclaim that the Lord will not abandon them in death.
Heavenly Father, we ask that you would make us ever mindful of our brothers and sisters around the world who need us to stand with them as they suffer in your name.
Teach us what it means to overcome by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of our testimony; we pray that we would not love our lives so much as to shrink from death.
O Lord, hear our prayer.