Someone may tell us about a tough time they're going through, and with the best of intentions we'll say, "I'll pray for you."
But, do we?
In this fast paced world that we are in today...do we really stop and pray for people every time that we tell them we will? Every time that we post to Facebook, "I'm praying for you."
I'm sure that some of you are wonderful about it.
You have prayer journals that you write in faithfully, every night without fail.
But, I'm not that girl. I have a prayer journal, and a journal dedicated to Caedmon, and one dedicated to Brennan, and now a health journal, and I'm sure I have about 3 others floating around here, too.
But, I don't spend much dedicated time in a prayer journal.
Don't get me wrong, I pray all of the time. I pray before my feet even hit the ground in the morning, and I pray throughout the day. Then, I usually wrap up my day with time talking to the Lord at night.
But as for being good about a prayer journal, I'm just not.
I gotta pray on the spot, or I'm likely to forget what I'm supposed to be praying about!
I know ME. I know that it's so easy to tell someone that I'm praying for them, yet never get around to actually doing it!
I mean, let's be honest....it sounds like the right thing to say when someone tells you they're in a tough spot... "I'll pray for you."
Again I ask, "but do we?"
Do we really?
Today a woman named Sherry called my house to talk with me about having my air conditioning serviced. She had phoned a few weeks ago, and I'd told her that Shane and I would need to talk about it and she and I agreed on a time that she'd follow up with me.
I even wrote myself a little note to be sure that I kept my word and talked with Shane...and here it sits on my desk, buried under notes about upcoming medical tests, but I'm off topic...
Well, Sherry called back today, and her first words were, "I'm sorry I didn't call you back as soon as I said I would, my roommate has been really sick and is in the hospital, and I've been dealing with that. It's been a really tough time."
So I asked her, "Sherry, what's your roommate's name?"
"May I pray for Annie? May I pray right now?"
Sherry said, "Oh, that would be great! Thank you!"
So we prayed. We went before the Lord of Hosts in prayer, and I prayed for Annie, and for Sherry. I prayed that God would be glorified in both of their lives, and that if it be His sovereign will, that He would heal Annie.
When it was over, I could hear the tears in Sherry's voice. She then explained a little more about the situation...Annie received a liver transplant a few years ago, and she's having major complications now. They think she has a rare disorder that is basically rejecting the liver all this time later.
Sherry's heart is breaking.
And Sherry needed someone to pray for her.
(As she shared about how long she and Annie have been friends, it made me think of how I felt several months ago when we found out about my friend Anna's diagnosis of MS. I wrote about it here.)
You know, it was because of a song by Steven Curtis Chapman that I listened to over and over again when I was a new believer, that I learned the importance of immediate prayer.
This link will take you right to his website, and when you land there, you'll see a little media player on the right hand side of the page. Just click the arrows to the right until you see the title, "Let Us Pray" and take a listen to the words of his song.
It's very, very convicting.
You can even buy the CD right from his site. The whole thing is so, so good!
"Let Us Pray" is one of my favorite songs of all times. Click here to read the words, as I can't seem to format a copy and paste right now.
I just want to encourage you. The next time you are about to tell someone, "I'll pray for you," stop instead and ask them if you can pray right then and there.
Pray in Starbucks for the gal behind the counter.
Pray at the doctor's office for the young mother in the waiting room.
Pray at Denny's with the waitress on the night shift.
Pray. Pray. Pray. Pray. Pray!
Storm the gates of heaven with your petitions for others! Entreat the Lord on their behalf!
Don't waste time worrying what they'll think of you.
WE DON'T HAVE TIME TO WASTE worrying about ourselves, sweet friends!
We gotta Pray!
I have never had ONE person tell me "no," and I ask permission of strangers to pray for them often, after someone shares their life with me. It's amazing how people will open up, if only we'll slow down enough to show them that we care about them.
When someone makes known a need, we need to pray!
Oh...I also want to share this with you. My new friend Sally called me a few days ago, yet we have yet to actually get to talk with one another. We're having a hard time connecting, as we kept getting each others' voice mails...I blame it on Eastern Standard Time. :)
Sally just decided to pray for me on my voice mail. She left the most precious petition to the Lord for me to hear, and I can't tell you how much it meant to me!
I know I'll listen to it often, and be refreshed by it each time I listen.
Thank you Sally, I love you.
You know I'll be praying over voicemails now! What a great idea! :)
What about you? Will you start practicing immediate prayer?
If you do, I think you'll be surprised by how much it will mean to people.
Love to you tonight,