Last week, I turned 25, and I have never celebrated a birthday for this long before. A full two weeks packed with a visit to an amusement park, a ball, a surprise lunch and an amazing dinner with some incredibly special people in my life.
Oh, and did I mention the presents? (Woohoo) And I loved every one of them, which included a new phone and a badge that says “I’m a punny guy.”
Yet, here I am, asking for more…
Ever since I’ve learnt about the power of prayer, I’ve loved praying for people. There’s a special joy that comes with lifting someone up in prayer and watching God work on it. I’ve always enjoyed it when somebody’s come back to me telling me what God has done for them after praying for something.
One of the biggest prayer warriors in the Bible was the Apostle Paul. Paul prayed for his people constantly, and his heart for them can be clearly seen in his epistles.
In one of them, he writes to the church in Ephesus, telling them to put on the armor of God –
“Stand firm then, with the belt of truth buckled around your waist, with the breastplate of righteousness in place, and with your feet fitted with the readiness that comes from the gospel of peace. In addition to all this, take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one. Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” – Ephesians 6:14-17
I’ve always thought this was awesome, and that this was enough; that if I put this armour on, I can stand strong and keep lifting people up in prayer; that this is all there is to living the way God wants us to.
But Paul doesn’t stop there. He goes on to say –
“And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the Lord’s people.” – Ephesians 6:18
And this is where I’m going, “Yeah Paul, preach it! Tell everyone to pray”
And Paul doesn’t stop there either. The Apostle Paul, who’s probably living the most righteous and God – pleasing life at this moment, who I thought had got life figured out and doesn’t need anyone’s advice or help, goes on to say this –
“Pray also for me…..” – Ephesians 6:19a
You see, for a long while now, I’ve thought that all I need to do is pray for others, especially when they’re going through difficult circumstances, but when it came to my circumstances, I believed it would be best to keep it between me and God. I thought it would be a burden on people if I asked them to pray for me, and that it might be selfish.
How wrong I was!
In a world that screams ‘be independent! Do not rely on anyone else’, I learnt that God cares deeply, not just about our vertical relationship with Him, but also our horizontal relationship with people.
We’re not meant to face our battles alone. God works through prayers, and when we don’t have the strength to pray, He lets us rely on the prayers of others.
I thought asking for prayers all the time would be selfish, but I now realize that not asking for them would be to consider myself not one of the ‘Lord’s people’ who Paul is asking his readers to pray for, which would be utterly foolish pride on my part.
Paul knew that, and that is why he wrote, in continuation to his plea for the church folk to put on the armor of God – ““pray all the time, and pray also for me”
So here I am, writing this, asking for this one thing, and promising you that I will give it back to you – your prayers.
If you’ve got prayer requests, you can let me know by clicking here (anonymously if you wish)