Seven Day Guide for Praying for Missionaries
There is an inseparable link between prayer and effective missions. The place God wants you in his missions program is something wonderful that you must discover from him. But it is his will that you pray for world evangelization. We don’t dare sidestep this opportunity and responsibility.
“Pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17)
“You should always pray and not give up” (Luke 18:1b)
Day 1 – Relationship with God
Too often we assume that missionaries don’t struggle like we do in their relationship with God. But this is the missionary’s primary need. Pray that our missionaries will:
Love and study God’s Word.
Have a strong prayer life.
Be filled with the Holy Spirit.
Be maturing spiritually.
Make progress over personal sin.
Day 2 – Physical and Emotional Needs
Satan often discourages us through our physical and emotional lives. Many missionaries live in difficult climates filled with disease. Pray for good health. With busy and hectic schedules, missionaries travel often. Pray for safety, stamina and a sense of priority. Remember that preventive prayer helps. Pray against discouragement, loneliness and depression.
Day 3 – Family Relationships
Pray for family relationships—husband/ wife, parent/child. Pray for the children, their salvation and spiritual growth, their health and education. Pray too that their family life will provide an excellent model for local Christians and the unsaved. Pray against the temptations that destroy families. For our single missionaries, pray that God will meet his or her needs in this area. Pray for strong, healthy friendships, and contentment in singleness.
Day 4 – Ability to Communicate
In world evangelization communication is crucial. Our missionaries are in ministry to share the gospel of Jesus Christ. Learning a new language and adapting to a new culture are frustrating, difficult and essential to good communication. Even an elementary knowledge of a language takes years of study and practice. And a superficial understanding is insufficient for communicating spiritual truths and defending the faith. But to really communicate, the missionary must adapt culturally to identify with those he is trying to reach. Getting close to the local people and understanding them means adjusting lifestyle and cultural preferences. Pray that our missionaries will have the stamina and understanding to demonstrate Christ cross-culturally.
Day 5 – Effective Ministry
Sometimes we can forget why our missionary are overseas, and why we are praying for him. Remember to pray for what your missionary is actually doing: witnessing, visiting, teaching, preaching, counseling, nursing — and pray for the people he or she is ministering to. Ask the Holy Spirit to empower your missionary for productivity. (John 15:16.)
Day 6 – Team Relationships
Our missionaries are not completely on their own. Normally, missionaries team up with other missionaries, local believers, pastors and evangelists. Unfortunately, this mix of personalities designed to strengthen the ministry can sometimes be used of Satan to weaken it. Poor team relationships can spoil the work. Pray for all the fellow workers our missionary partner with. Pray they appreciate and sharpen one another in good and healthy ways.
Day 7 – Country of Service
Expand your praying to include the entire country where your missionary is located. The political situation, the government and its leaders, visas, freedom to preach the gospel—all of these are important factors in world evangelization. You can also pray that the whole country will open up in responsiveness to the gospel.