Every missionary I talk to says that consistent, persistent prayer is the most important thing they need. We might not have the means to go or feel called to go; we might not have the resources to support much financially; but we all have the ability to be powerful intercessors for those who do go.
Right now some of my missionary friends face challenges and needs such as these—the loss of a son; discouragement; weariness; separation from family for a few weeks; more financial support, etc.
I know you pray or want to pray for those we have sent to the mission field especially when you are reminded. In case you aren’t sure how to pray for them, here is a helpful list.
Will you spend time interceding for the missionaries you know serving on the field?
- Love for God – Overworked missionaries can become service-oriented rather than love-oriented. Pray that your missionaries’ love for the Lord will deepen, and that love for him will always be their prime motivation for service.
- Love for Others – Yes, missionaries are human, and just like you, sometimes they have trouble showing love and respect to those “difficult to love” people—either their missionary coworkers or nationals. Pray that the Lord will make your missionaries’ love “increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else” (1 Thessalonians 3:12).
- A Deeper Relationship with God – Missionaries’ schedules can become so packed that they might skip or skimp on their time with the Lord. Pray that your missionaries would follow Jesus’ example.
- Spirit-Controlled Lives – Just like the rest of us, sometimes missionaries have a tendency to do the Lord’s work in their own energy and human ingenuity. Pray that all of your missionaries’ actions will be under the control of, and by the power of, the Holy Spirit.
- The Fruit of the Spirit – As you pray that your missionaries will be under the control of the Holy Spirit, pray that the fruit of the Spirit—the very beauty of Jesus—will be manifest in their lives.
- Wisdom and Knowledge – Strong-willed missionaries often come into conflict when two or more of them have opposing viewpoints. Pray that missionaries will have the wisdom of God (James 3:17).
- Courage – Imagine your missionaries making the same prayer request Paul did in Ephesians 6:19: “Pray also for me, that whenever I open my mouth, words may be given me so that I will fearlessly make known the mystery of the gospel.”
- Receptive Hearts – Pray for divine providence, that the Lord will lead your missionaries to people whose hearts will be open to hearing and receiving the gospel message.
- Disciples – Pray that your missionaries will experience the joy of leading others to salvation, and of “teaching them to obey everything [Christ] commanded” (Matthew 28:20).
- Strong Faith – The apostles once made a direct request of Jesus: “Increase our faith!” Pray that your missionaries will have great faith that will lead them to ask great things of our Lord.
- Steadfastness – Pray that your missionaries will follow Paul’s advice to the Corinthians: “Stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain” (1 Corinthians 15:58).
- Strong Family – Cross-cultural living can magnify even small family conflicts. Pray that members of missionary families will be drawn together, not torn apart, by living in a new culture.
- Protection – Missionaries are prime targets of the enemy. Join Jesus in praying to the Father: “My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one” (John 17:15).
- Material Needs – Missionaries often face harsh living conditions, and may have to struggle to meet basic physical needs. Pray that the Lord will supply all their financial and material needs “according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).
- Health and Strength – In today’s increasingly violent world, missionaries face not only sickness, they may also be victims of crime, civil unrest or political upheaval. Pray that the Lord will grant the measure of health and strength that will bring his greatest glory and the greatest good for the missionaries.