Prayer is essential for ministry. Anyone who tells you they are doing ministry without prayer is not effective. Their ministry may look like a thriving ministry on the outside, but unless it is bathed in prayer, no lasting change can take place.
Although most of us know this and do have a thriving prayer life, sometimes we can get centered on our own ministries instead of prayer for God’s Kingdom to come.
Here’s some ideas to make your prayers more intentional and effective.
Pray for those in your ministry by name. If you have twenty people of less that your ministering to, this seems doable, but what if you have a large amount, you’ll need some planning to accomplish this.
1. Identify your core leaders. These are the people you pray for once a day or at least once a week. Write these names in your prayer journal.
2. Divide the other names up into section so that you pray for each person at least once a year. Have a list in your prayer journal so you can mark off the names as you pray for the people. If you know of a need, move that person to the top of your list.
3. Delegate if your list is too large. There are some ministries so large that even this is not practical. If this is the case, divide the names up and give them to your core leaders. You will pray for the leaders. The leaders will pray for the people.
4. Pray Scripture over the names on your list. Here’s a few Scriptures you can use:
- 1 Thessalonians 5:23
- Ephesians 1:17
- John 15:5
Pray for God’s Plan: Those of us in ministry have a bad habit of looking at what works in other ministries and implementing them into our own. Then we ask God to bless something He didn’t tell us to do.
Seek God’s face and find out what He wants you to do. Our ministry plans will not be effective unless they come from God.
I explain how to do this more in this post: 3 Things You Need to Become an Effective Children’s Minister.
Here’s some ways to pray once you hear from God:
- Pray for open doors according to Revelation 1:17.
- Pray that our territory will be expanded according to 1 Chronicles 4:10.
- Pray for God’s favor according to Psalm 5:12.
- Pray for God to meet the needs for laborers and resources according to Philippians 4:19.
Pray for other ministries: We sometimes get self-centered in our prayers and only pray for our ministries, but God wants us to expand our borders. As His Kingdom comes in the ministries and lives of others, it will also expand our ministry. Here’s some ideas to expand your prayers.
- Pray for other ministries within your church.
- Pray for other churches and ministers within your community.
- Pray for ministry worldwide.
Pray Globally: So often, churches hold pray meetings where we get together to grow our church, our congregation, and pray for the needs of our people. But we are globally the body of Christ. We should pray for our brothers and sisters in Christ wherever they may be.
Some of the best resources for praying globally and for our nation are at Every Home for Christ. Many of these resources are free.
Resolve to pray intentionally, and see how God moves.