November 17, 2011

Serving Through Prayer

Philippians 1:1-11

In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy …
Philippians 1:4


Paul served others through prayer. We know of no more effective way to serve others than through prayer. It’s the foundation of our response to Jesus’ calling.

At a weekday church event, we noticed a young mother’s tear-filled eyes and offered to pray for her. Her husband was a soldier deployed in Iraq. We laid hands on her and prayed for the family and her husband’s battalion at church on the following Sunday and at other worship services. Months later, after we had moved, we heard that the family was attending our former church. More recently, while visiting that church, a man who was practicing with the worship team came up to us to say, “I’m the soldier you prayed for.”

Nearly everyone will respond positively to your offer to pray for them. We suggest these steps:

Ask God to help you see and understand the people in your life with whom you have regular contact.

As God lays certain names on your heart, commit to praying for them regularly.

Be sensitive to seeing them with Jesus’ eyes, taking note of what you see and experience.

Humbly, simply let them know they are among the people you pray for. Invite them to name more specific prayer requests.

Within a week, find opportunity to follow up.

Lord, people are hungry for prayer. Open our eyes to see the people among our contacts who need you. Help us to touch others with your compassion and love. Amen.

About the author — Allen & Lynn Likkel

Revs. Allen and Lynn Likkel have worked in communities across North America for many years—planting churches, nurturing them along, and developing new church leaders. A minister in the Christian Reformed Church, Allen served with Christian Reformed Home Missions for nearly 40 years, and Lynn, also ordained as a minister of the Word, has served to build leaders and new congregations. In November 2010, Allen entered retirement, and the Likkels moved to Washington, their native state. They have four adult children.

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