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September 19, 2021 | Doug Sauder
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“Now I beg you, brethren, through the Lord Jesus Christ, and through the love of the Spirit, that you strive together with me in prayers to God for me.”—Romans 15:30 (NKJV)
“I need prayer.” “Please pray for me.”
Although the cause of those words implies brokenness, they bring an amount of joy to our Father’s heart. His people—asking His people—for His help. At the core of the request rests humility, and that always puts us in a vulnerable, weak position to which God would say, “Exactly.”
Look at what Paul says, “I beg you, brethren . . . ” This is Paul: the chief apostle. Set apart to be the greatest missionary to speak the gospel. Threatened by many of his contemporaries for his zealous drive, he still held an unparalleled reputation within the Church. And He’s begging for prayer.
I find that fascinating and quite convicting because often I fail to ask for prayer—even though I really need it. Yet, Paul had no false bravado; pride proved no barrier to humbling himself before the Church—the same way the nobleman in John’s Gospel implored Jesus to come down and heal his son (John 4:47). No pretense, no shame. He simply had come to the end of all else and found his way to Christ.
If you are afraid to ask for prayer, if you think it’s a burden to others or exposes your frailty, please reconsider your fear. The family of Christ is an immense support system designed by an immense God . . . a God who counsels us to carry one another’s burdens (Galatians 6:2). Don’t allow fear or pride—which God tells us not to have—prevent you from experiencing the power of intercessory prayer. More importantly, don’t let it rob God of the opportunity to do an amazing work in your life through someone who loves you. It’s a win-win-win; for the intercessor, for you, and for God.
Need more convincing? Hear the heart of the Lord through James: “Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him . . . in the name of the Lord . . . Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed . . .” (James 5:14–16 NKJV).
My choice to ask for prayer admits that I struggle. But the more I do it, the more my pride fades and humility takes the place of fear. More importantly, I witness the character of God’s loving-kindness flow out of my sisters and brothers . . . and I am healed.
Dig: Search other areas in the New Testament where Paul asks for prayer.
Discover: What does his pleading tell you about his character and the importance of intercession?
Display: Do you have a prayer request you haven’t shared? Seek out a prayer warrior and watch what God will do.
Lisa Supp lives in Utah and has served within the CCFL Web and Prayer Ministry since 2011. She also volunteers as an editor on the CCFL Prayer Wall and is a writer on the Communications Team. Retired from teaching, Lisa and her husband Ron volunteer at their local Calvary Chapel and share a passion for Scripture, apologetics, and education.