As Christians, it is a given that we are to help those who are in need. One way we can help them is by praying for them. In John 13:35, Jesus teaches us that the way the world will know that we are His disciples is by how we treat our fellow brothers and sisters in Christ, which is by loving them. We can show our love for them by praying for them if they are in need.
Father in heaven, stir up in me a heart of love and compassion, where just as I pray passionately for myself, I will pray the same for the well-being and needs of others. Help me be selfless and always cover my friends in prayer. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
Why do we have to pray for a friend in need?
What Jesus said in John 13:35 is more than enough to tell us why we must pray for our friends in need. If we come to know that they are in need, we won’t turn a blind eye to them but instead help them and pray for them. It is because we love them as we ought to and as commanded by Jesus. In Matthew 22:34-40, Jesus summarized the law into two parts: To love God with all of our heart, soul, and mind and to love our neighbors as ourselves.
If indeed we love God, then loving others would and should automatically follow, and one of the ways we do that is by praying for others we know are in need.
Another reason we should pray for our friends in need is that the Bible tells us that we should carry each other’s burdens. In Galatians 6:2, it is written that we are to carry or bear one another’s burdens. This is how we fulfill the law of Christ, which says that we should love one another.
Carrying each other’s burdens also means consistently praying for whatever burdens or needs that others have. If we have problems, burdens, or needs, we should consistently pray about them to God. This is expected since they are the cares and concerns that we have. However, just as we always pray to God regarding our concerns and cares, we should do the same for others. We pray for their needs and concerns as if they are our own. We kneel before God for the concerns and needs of others in prayer. That is how we carry each other’s burdens, making us a church community that is centered on Christ.
An excellent example of this is the apostle Paul himself. In Romans 1:9-10, in his letter to the church in Rome, he wrote about not ceasing to mention them (the Roman church) in his prayers. It is the same thing we ought to do as Christians. We should unceasingly mention others in our prayers. Praying for our friends who are in need is one of the ways that we show selfless love.
Praying for a friend in need is not just something we should do for our fellow friends in church. Just as we ought to love our friends in church and pray for those brothers and sisters in Christ who are in need, we should do the same for those who don’t know Christ yet. It is written in Matthew 5:13-16 that we are the salt and light for the world. Salt was used in their time to make food taste better and preserve it. In other words, we become the salt in the world by making things better and acting as a blessing to others. It is how we demonstrate the Gospel and point those who are lost towards Christ, who is the light of the world. One of the ways we do this is by praying for those lost people and their needs.
It is how we love those who are lost and demonstrate it by praying for them and their needs that will open doors for them to be discipled so that we can preach the Gospel to them, praying that they will repent and believe the finished work of Christ. Remember that we are ministers of reconciliation and ambassadors of Christ, as written in 2 Corinthians 5:18-20.
Father in heaven, I pray that your command of carrying others’ burdens and always selflessly mentioning others in prayers shall always be evident in my prayer life. I pray that my love for You shall be translated to my love for my fellow brothers and sisters in Christ. I also pray that I will demonstrate the Gospel and be the salt and light to the lost by loving and praying for them and their needs. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
How do I pray for my friends in need?
How we pray for our friends in need is by first knowing what their needs are. We cannot pray to God for something if we don’t know what to say. You can find out their needs and the things you can pray for them while having conversations with your friends, both those who are in church and those who are yet to be welcomed in. You can also occasionally check up on them and ask them how they are doing and if there is anything that you can offer in prayer for them. Not only can you find out what their needs are, but you also get to check on their well-being, which is an act of care and love.
It is important to note that praying for a friend in need is more than just praying to God for their physical needs alone. Their needs could be strength as they go through tough times, wisdom as they face challenges in work, grace to be patient towards their classmate who is annoying, peace amidst the storms in life, etc. As you pray for whatever needs they have, you also pray for the person who is in need. For example, suppose a person needs wisdom before an exam; you can ask God to place grace and wisdom upon that person. In that case, you can also pray that the person shall ultimately seek out God for wisdom and help regarding the exam instead of depending on themselves or others.
Below is an example of praying for a friend in need:
Father in heaven, I pray for my brother in Christ, who is currently experiencing challenging financial times. I pray for financial provision upon him. Thank You because You are the One who sustains Him. I also pray for favor in the eyes of his boss and ask that he receive a salary increase. Most of all, I pray that he will continue to depend on You for provision as he diligently works and that amidst the financial difficulties he is experiencing, he will continue to be content in Christ, who is his greatest treasure. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.
When we see a friend in need, we must pray for them. However, the Bible also says that if they have a need and it is within our capability to help them, for example, to bless a person if we have the resources to bless them, we ought not just pray for them but also help them. For your unbelieving friends who are also in need, the essential thing that you should pray is for their salvation through preaching the Gospel. Every need that they have can be found in Christ alone. Our most critical need is salvation for our sins, which Christ alone can offer.