Let’s Go For A Walk! Prayer Walking for Our Community (Day 13 of the Pray-May Challenge)

Yesterday, we prayerfully watched people. Today, we get more active by prayer walking. 

Day 13: Prayer Walking For Our Community

Prayer walking is a way of getting present to your community and praying for your community in the name of Jesus. It’s active engagement, intended to get us out to where the prayer is needed, letting the Holy Spirit guide our hearts and minds, even as he guides our feet.

So our practice for today is very straightforward. Go for a walk, and as you do, pray. This can be done alone, or with a friend (though you should tell them why you are walking and they should be willing to join you in audible prayer as you walk together. And if walking is an issue for you, then substitute driving for walking. The point is to get out there.)

I don’t want to complicate the practice with more words, because it really is that simple. However, here are 13 areas into which you could pray as you walk.

Pray for God’s kingdom to come and his will to be done, in the name of Jesus:

  1. In the families who occupy the homes you pass by
  2. In the schools of our community; for teachers, principals, admin and support staff, as well as the students themselves.
  3. For the flourishing of local businesses, farms and non-profits
  4. For those in our community who are lonely and hurting and who may be hidden from sight: shut-ins, seniors, immigrants or people struggling with physical or mental illness
  5. For those places of healing (hospitals, hospices) as well as all those who work to bring healing and care to many (doctors, nurses, social workers, counselors, and care workers of all kinds)
  6. For those who have suffered recent loss, such as divorce, a bad health diagnosis or bankruptcy
  7. For the animals, soil, air and water–for health and blessing
  8. For the abused and the abusers–mercy and healing and justice
  9. Against any hidden darkness that seeks to destroy–principalities and powers and the work of the evil one
  10. For the local churches you may pass, their pastors, leaders, parishioners and witness to the community
  11. For the lost!! For every man, woman and child to come to know Jesus’ love for them
  12. For local leadership–political, ministerial, social, medical–any influencers you can think of
  13. For the growth and health of your whole community, that your neighbourhood, city or county may become a better, more loving community for everyone who lives there.

These are just suggestions–the main point is to get out there and pray as the Holy Spirit leads you to pray.

The fact is, Saturday is a great day for a walk. So let’s go for that walk, and as we do, let’s talk with our Father about his world, for the sake of its healing, restoration and salvation.

(Want to find out more about prayer walking? Check out this great post on prayer walking from WayMakers.)

Here’s my prayer for us today: Spirit, guide our feet today, as we walk with you and pray for our communities. May we go to the places that need us most, and intercede for them as you would have us do. You are the one who gave everything–even your own Son–to see the lost found and the broken healed. May we walk with you today, and pray for your kingdom to come and your will to be done, on this bit of earth, even as it is in heaven. Amen. 

And hey, after you’ve walked, let us know where you went in the comments section! Let’s celebrate together that places which received prayer today.

 

 

Day 8 of the Pray-May Challenge: Pray by name for everyone you can

Welcome to Day 8 of our month-long prayer challenge! I’m excited to introduce you to our prayer practice today, as I’ve found it very engaging and helpful to me.

Day 8: Pray By Name For Everyone You Can

We often pray for people as they come to our minds, or for a set of people on a regular basis–family and friends, people with needs, anticipating an upcoming event or inspired by particular situations.

Today, we will pray for everyone we can think of, within a certain amount of time, bringing each one before the Father and committing them to his care. And we’ll do that by making a long list of names.

Here’s how it works.

  1. Get a notebook or a few sheets of paper and a good pen. If you have a journal or prayer log, you might want to use that.
  2. At the top of the sheet or page, write a brief prayer for everyone you will be naming in prayer. It could be “May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with all” who are on this list. (2 Corinthians 13:14). Or you might pray, “Jesus, may each person I name feel your love and experience your grace today.”
  3. And then, begin writing the names of the people in your life, beginning those close and obvious, and then moving outward. (I do find that hand-writing is best, as it is slow enough I can draw each person’s face into my mind as I pray for them. But if you need to type this list, that’s great, too.)
  4. At first, names will come fairly easy. You will name your family, your friends, and you will cover ground quickly. Then, after a number of names, you will pause and begin thinking of others, further out. You’ll recall their kids, or a person you met just the other day. You’ll remember a barista, a clerk, a student or a neighbour. And the list will grow. Push yourself to keep writing names steadily and prayerfully.
  5. Some of you might struggle to remember their names, but you can still recall the people. That’s okay–the Lord knows who they are. I encourage you, if you think of a person you met the other day but can’t remember their names, describe them briefly (red coat), or just say “that woman I met at the grocery store on Wednesday” and then move on.
  6. For particular name or groups of names, things may come to your mind. You may know more of what you can pray for–do so briefly. The Holy Spirit may even insert new thoughts or impressions to pray for others. Go with that. For most, you’ll just be writing their names, and speaking a general blessing over them.  But as you do, you are offering each to the Lord, and asking for his love and grace and freedom and power to meet and transform each one. That’s a powerful exercise.
  7. You can take as long as you like on this exercise, or, if time is a concern, set a timer for 10-15 minutes and just write as steadily as you can during that time. Do what works for you.
  8. When you are done your list (which could be hundreds of names long), offer a closing prayer for them. Pray from your heart, asking for the Holy Spirit to minister to them today. How amazing it is to know that he can do just that, for each and every person you’ve named.

That’s the prayer challenge for today! A simple practice and yet forming a prayerful exercise of memory and relationship. I found as I did it that I remembered people I’d not thought about for a long time, and was even able to send a few messages of encouragement as a result.

Jesus knows intimately each and every one. Let’s pray today for his guiding and graceful presence in the lives of all we know.

And for you, dear reader and faithful pray-er, I ask, “Lord Jesus, guide the thoughts and hands of each one today. As we pray for those we know, be them close or only in brief acquaintance, may we grow in our conviction of your loving personal care for each one, and our part in interceding in prayer for them. Thank you for your grace. Amen.”


Our Pray-May Challenge so far: