While I was leading a Bible study on spiritual warfare, one woman spoke up and said, “I don’t have to worry about spiritual warfare. I don’t witness, so Satan leaves me alone.”
What blessings this lady was missing in seeing others have a personal relationship with Jesus. To their credit, those who were in the Bible study stifled their shock and expressed their concern.
For the past 15 years, I have had a dozen prayer warriors who have committed to pray for me at least one time every week. They pray every week for my family because the first day of each month, I send out an email to them asking them to pray for Mary Leigh, my wife, and me. I’m detailed and specific. Sometimes I give them the exact date prayer cover is needed. They are partners in God’s mission in my life.
Ask any missionary what they need most and that they will usually say, “Prayer!” Southern Baptist missionaries are always grateful that the Cooperative Program giving from our churches provides their financial support. They don’t have to raise money, but they still have to do “friend-raising.” They raise their own support for volunteers to visit to augment their work and especially for providing prayer cover for them. The same for your associational missionary, too!
A prayer leader at the IMB once said, “Prayer doesn’t get you ready for missions. Prayer IS missions.” I agree. Prayer doesn’t force God to do anything and prayer is not a Santa wish-list. It is a supernatural way of connecting with God and aligning with His will and His purposes.
Involving others–at least one dozen—in what God has called you to do. It blesses you and them, too! How do you mobilize effective prayer? Here are two ideas:
1. Paint a word picture by telling your story. When we say, “Pray for the XX number of Navajo who are lost,” that’s one thing—generic and cold. It’s another to say, “Pray for my wife and I working with Sally. Sally is 14 and being pressured into sex trafficking. Pray that she will hear the good news of Jesus.” It’s specific, urgent, and still warm.
2. And don’t forget that sharing answers to specific prayer requests encourages more praying as the focus increasingly brings glory God. It’s not bragging, but allowing prayer warriors to celebrate with you!
Recruit at least a dozen prayer supporters who will engage in spiritual warfare alongside you. And consider joining CABA’s Prayer Team. Email Roger Hauck at firstname.lastname@example.org.
This year’s Associational Week of Prayer is scheduled May 14-20. Packets have been mailed to each church. Contact the CABA office to request pew envelopes and prayer guides. We have plenty!