How to Follow Through When You Say You’ll Pray
A Free Printable Resource from Julie Gillies – www.JulieGillies.com
Have you ever told a friend you’d pray for them, and then completely forgotten about it? I have. I’m not
only frustrated by my failure to pray, I’m embarrassed—especially when I run into my friend later.
We need each other’s prayers. Yet most of us juggle never-ending task lists and multiple family
responsibilities. So how do we make good on the promise to pray for someone? Below you’ll find strategies
I’ve developed to help back up our words with action.
§ Write it down. If you don’t have a prayer list, make one. Then place it where you’ll see it:
inside your Bible, on your nightstand, near the telephone, or taped to your bathroom mirror.
§ Schedule it. As in Monday, 9:30 AM – Pray for Angela. Use Outlook, your iPhone, Droid, day
planner, or the good old calendar hanging on your fridge.
§ Ask God to remind you to pray. He will. Expect to be reminded while you’re busy doing
something else. Determine to pray the moment you’re reminded, just as soon as you receive
the prompting—even if that means excusing yourself from the room briefly.
§ Pray during one mindless activity every day. Like when you’re vacuuming, when you wash
dishes, fold laundry, pick up toys or when brush your teeth.
§ Sing a song. For more serious, long-term illnesses, difficult pregnancies, etc., I think of (or
even make up) a song and insert my friend’s name into it. That song then becomes their song,
and it’s amazing how frequently it comes to mind. If King David could sing his prayers, so can
we. (See the book of Psalms.)
§ Stay in touch with your friend. Drop your friend a short email reminding her that you’re
praying, or send a pretty note card via snail mail. This simple act will keep your friend
encouraged, and help keep her on your heart.
§ Remember, it’s okay to pray for someone for a limited time. You can tell your friend “I’ll pray for you this
week.” I regularly modify my prayer list, crossing off one person or situation and adding another as the Lord
leads. This way, I don’t have an unrealistic, endless prayer list.
§ Count the cost. If you don’t feel like you can manage to pray for your friend right now, don’t
make the offer. You can always simply pray for her over the phone, or when you get together.
Better one sincere prayer that a promise you’re unable to keep.
The prayers of the righteous are powerful and effective (see James 5:16), but only if we actually pray
them. With these simple strategies and God’s help, we can follow through when we say we’ll pray.
And we’ll have the blessing of knowing God is using our prayers to touch someone’s life.