My friend stood in the church hallway, holding a large camera in her hand. She wore a black wrist brace, so I asked if her wrist was healing.
“No, I’m having a lot of pain right now, but I offered to take photos this morning,” she answered with a sigh.
After a crowd of people passed by, I asked, “Would you like for me to pray for you?”
“Yes. I’d love that,” she answered, holding out her hand. Fingers touched and eyes met before we bowed our heads to pray.
Joining me for the “amen,” she smiled and commented, “Thank you. No one has ever just stopped and prayed in the moment with me before. Why don’t we do more of that?”
Her question hung in the air and echoed in my heart.
Yes. Why don’t we?
At the time, I didn’t consider that I was doing anything unusual. But I remember a time when offering to pray in the moment would have felt risky and more than a little awkward.
Some days, the needs for prayer stack high and heavy on our hearts. We’ve promised to pray, and we intend to pray later when it’s quiet. For me, it’s too easy to forget to pray when later comes.
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people—for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. This is good, and pleases God our Savior (1 Timothy 2:1-3 NIV).
First things first, this instruction addresses both time (when) and priority (order). Rather than an if-all-else-fails plan, prayer is our first priority, our first solution, and the thing to do first of all.
Paul instructs us to pray before we do anything else, the kind of prayer best fitting the situation. Building the habit of prayer makes a difference: we live quiet and peaceful lives in all godliness and holiness.
There are many simple and quick ways to pray in the moment. Sometimes it may be like my experience this morning at church, praying aloud with someone. Then there are the harried moments when we are the ones in need of prayer.
Consider these simple ideas to pray in the moment rather than intend to pray later:
- Write a prayer on a social media thread or message when you see a request.
- Send a written prayer in a letter, card, or email to a friend needing encouragement.
- Text a prayer or make a phone call when God brings a need to mind.
I hope you’ll click over to Sarah’s website for the rest of this post. She has loaded the post with wonderful graphics to enjoy and share.
You can also find a post from Sarah on my blog here: 4 Ways to Bless Others When You’re Facing a Trial.
What simple ways help you to pray for others?