In a previous post on this blog, Matt Henslee shared five ways churches can pray for their pastors as we begin a new year.
I wanted to take that same idea but from the other direction. Here are five simple things pastors can pray for their churches as we close out the first month of 2022.
1. Pray for unity
It’s no secret that our nation and culture is extremely divided on many fronts right now. I personally think Satan would like nothing more than for these divisions to creep into churches and distract folks from the Great Commission and Great Commandment. Pray that God would supernaturally protect the unity of His church (both the local church and the larger universal Church).
2. Pray for the mission
Whether or not we ever move into a “post-COVID” world, the mission King Jesus has given us continues. We may have to rethink strategies for reaching our communities, but the mandate to take the gospel to the ends of the earth never stopped. So, pray that God will give you and the leaders in your church wisdom as you seek to effectively reach your community with the power of the gospel!
3. Pray for your church members’ spiritual lives
It is probably no secret to you that biblical illiteracy is rampant, not only in the world at large, but also in the church. In 2019, LifeWay Research discovered that only 32% of Protestant Christians said they read the Bible every day. In another study conducted in 2016, LifeWay discovered that the biggest factor in the spiritual growth of young adults was regular Bible reading as children. So, as you pray for your church members to grow in their spiritual lives, pray that they will be immersed in the Word of God each and every day.
4. Pray for your church members’ families
Sometimes busyness and stress can sneak up and create conflict within families. Pray that the members of your church would prioritize their time with their families. Pray especially for dads to step up as the spiritual leader in their homes. We live in a world that is confused about the role of the biological family and, especially, the role of fathers. Pray that the men in your church would model what being a godly husband and father looks like for their wives, children and the watching world.
5. Pray for your church members’ neighborhoods
Based on what we currently know about the state of lostness in North America, it is quite likely that your church members may be among the very few believers in their neighborhoods. They may be surrounded by families in chaos, domestic violence, addictions and confusion. Pray that your church members will be witnesses to their lost neighbors throughout this year. One easy way to do this would be to put a map of your city or community in the church office and mark off the major neighborhoods, then systematically pray through those neighborhoods each week, month, etc.
Published January 26, 2022