Do you like being prayed for?
I guess we all do, don’t we?
Would you even agree with me that a prayer said for someone else is one of the highest forms of love??
As Christians, we are supposed to pray for one another and I am sure you all have a prayer list and people and topics / issues you pray for on a regular basis…. right?
So do I.
I attend prayer calls, especially those for my prison ministry groups, where we pray for prisoners and staff of this one prison where we are connected to the chaplain.
Me, I even have the privilege to go into the prison as a volunteer for the chaplaincy of this prison and assist with the Sunday Service twice a month.
It’s a tremendous blessing for me to go there and see the men being hungry for GOD, being “serious” about wanting to meet with HIM and wanting to hear from HIM – in the service or outside of the service, in their cells, on the wings, when they go to court, when they speak to their loved ones, even outside after their release….
One of the things we get to do is we offer to pray for them after the service and many take us up on our offer and walk up to us requesting prayer and telling us what is on their hearts and asking us to pray for what is currently bothering them or weighing them down the most.
Since I have been going in there very regularly for quite a few months now – since May 2022, when they reopened the prison for volunteers after covid again – I have seen many of the men every other Sunday and many of them have spoken to me and given me an update or even a testimony of a prayer I said for them or for others.
Here are some examples – and I know that the ones I am aware of are just a small fraction of the prayers GOD has heard in that place and in our group:
One guy came up to me and told me that the man I had prayed for to have a mild sentence in his court chase where he had to appear for sentencing the following week, and they had released him from court!
Another one was sitting next to me and I felt GOD saying that HE wants to prove HIMSELF to this man and that HE wants to do something big for him.
So I asked him if he had a request for GOD and I told him that I sensed GOD wanted to do something for him, if he had any wishes or requests in his heart?
He looked at me and I sensed that he was suspicious and reluctant to open up to me, and he said he is open for anything….
So I asked him what GOD told me to ask, if he had a court date coming up, and he answered “tomorrow!”.
Then GOD told me to tell him that HE will set him free and that HE wants him to serve him and help others and turn his life around outside….
I told the guy and he said he would think about it.
He agreed when I asked him if I could pray for him.
The following day, I was back in the prison for a course I was co-facilitating there, and it was a great day, I had already forgotten about the man and the prayer from the day before.
When I was sitting in the train on my way home in the evening, I “happened to” look outside the window and guess who was walking there on the platform, outside, a free man, still in his prison tracksuit, but looking happy and relieved – yes, the guy I had prayed for the day before and the guy GOD had promised to release the next day… not sure if he saw me, but I am 100% sure that GOD wanted me to see him, wanted me to know that I had been hearing HIM correctly and that I had been obedient by saying what HE had told me to say to this man – and I am hoping and praying that this man will continue to listen to GOD and that he will truly devote his life to HIM from now on.
Third one is a guy who used to attend the services in a wheelchair for a long time…. I felt sorry for him. I mean, I feel for all the men in the prison, but I was thinking, to be in a wheelchair and even more vulnerable in custody must be even harder than being there without any additional challenges through a disease or disability.
One day, GOD told me to tell this man that HE hasn’t forgotten about him and that HE will heal him.
I was reluctant to tell him this.
And I asked GOD “really, FATHER, do you really want me to tell him this???” – not that I doubted GOD or that HE can heal anyone, I just doubted myself and if I had heard HIM correctly…. I wanted to make sure that what I was about to say to this man was truly coming from GOD and not from my heart, as I wished it for him….
I walked up to him and told him.
He said “I know.”And he told me that recently, he had been very serious with GOD and that he had been starting to pray and to read the bible and that he knew that GOD will heal him one day.
And believe it or not, the next time I saw him, on the following Sunday I was in, 2 weeks later, he came into the service WALKING on his own feet, without crutches and no longer in a wheelchair.
I wasn’t the only one who was flabbergasted and I almost cried tears of joy when I saw him.
He came to me and told me that the next day after I had told him this and prayed for him, they had come to take him to the hospital and he had surgery – he had not known of this before and he hadn’t even known that there was some sort of operation that could help him, and he thanked me for my message from GOD and for my prayer.
Friends, what I am saying is once again, I’ve said it before and I know it is true: prayer works and GOD answers prayer.
There is something sweet and gentle and tender and incredibly touching in someone praying for us.
I can see it in the eyes of the men after the service – or the next time when they tell me what happened or what they had been thinking about or working on since I had prayed for them….
And of course, I also know that GOD has answered some of my own prayers in the past and I know the tremendous joy this brings!
But I wanted to point out and I had been reminiscing on how good it is to receive prayer and how there is -at least for me- not much that makes me feel more joy, comfort, hope, reassurance and love….
During the time when my dad passed, just a few weeks back – or during other crises in my life – prayer was what strengthened me, kept me going and helped me through these difficult times.
But even today.
I wanted to share this with you:
So after the service, we normally pray for each other and the chaplains pray for us.
Today, they prayed for me and when one of the chaplains was praying, more like a general prayer, he doesn’t really know much about me or of what’s going on in my life (which is fine) and his prayer still felt nice and well meant, but then the other chaplain, the one I work for and the one I got closer to over the past years, she said: “give her her heart’s desires, LORD!”
And this touched me deep in my spirit.
Like a warm hug.
Even though it was the other chaplain who had his hand on my shoulder.
Her words “hit home”.
And gave me hope.
They made me aware of GOD’s love for me.
And I received them.
Even though I had been sad recently that GOD hadn’t heard any of my prayers for a while now and that HE hadn’t given me any of my heart’s desires lately, not last year – not one of them!! – I was encouraged by this prayer.
It was as if this short prayer changed a lot and I am much more positive again.
And it is both a blessing, to pray for others and to be prayed for.
A huge blessing.
One that only we children of THE MOST HIGH can receive and share.
I truly believe that to pray for someone and someone praying for us is one of the greatest gifts and one of the highest forms of love.
I believe it is strengthening the person we pray for and ourselves.
And it brings joy – to both the giving and the receiving person of the prayers.
This is because they are doing what GOD wants us to do and we can feel his approval, that HE is pleased with us.
Even if HE will not answer all of our prayers, HE is still pleased with us seeking HIM, calling on HIM, making our requests known to HIM.
I don’t know about you, my friend, but I have heard GOD many times and I know when HE gives me a promise.
Today, I have received many promises from GOD through the short prayer said by the chaplain – it was a prophetic prayer! – she has spoken into my life before and GOD brought it to pass, so I know HE will do it again!!!!!
I just wanted to encourage us to pray for each other, to give and receive prayer, to express our prayer requests – in groups or to godly people we know.
I am thinking I should probably pray more with someone I trust completely – perhaps I will ask one of my church sisters and close friends if she already has a prayer partner and if not, if she fancies praying together once a week….?
How about you, my friend, do you have a prayer partner?
Or a prayer group?
Or does your church offer corporate prayer sessions or calls (mine has zoom meetings for prayer every morning)?
What is your experience with being prayed for and praying for others?
Let me know in the comments if you feel like sharing…?
I hope and pray that this will bless you, inspire you, encourage you and heal you.
And that THE LORD will bless you abundantly in all areas of your life. That HE will keep you and shine HIS face upon you and bring you peace. In JESUS’ name I pray. AMEN.