Oswald Chambers once said, “There is nothing to be valued more highly than to have people praying for us; God links up His power in answer to their prayers.”
This past weekend I had the honor of speaking at a women’s retreat that was hosted by my church. It was an incredible experience to have an opportunity to use my words to share a bit of my life story, along with the message of how God’s fingerprints and love have brought redemption into my life.
Knowing that I would be sharing some very personal moments of my story to a group of women who I largely do not know well, I knew I would need a lot of prayer in preparation for the event. So I asked for prayer.
It is very powerful to know that someone is praying for us. Prayers are powerful in our lives even if we do not know who is praying or what they are praying. Prayers are a blessing.
To me, it is very powerful when people share their prayers, especially in a format that we can take, carry forward, and pray through multiple times.
I know there were a great many people who were praying for me as I prepared to stand, speak, and share.
I had four incredible friends who sent me their prayers as messages while I was preparing. They were so powerful I just felt this morning like the best way that I could thank them for their beautiful prayers was to share them with you. You may find their prayers are beneficial to your heart as well as they spill over with refreshment.
Eileen 9/14/18 at 6:51am: “Praying this over you today: ‘Julie will fill her thoughts with my words until they penetrate deep within her spirit. Then as she unwraps my words, they will impart true life & radiant health into the very core of her being.’ Proverbs 4:21-22 TPT”
MarShondria 9/17/18 at 8:44am: “Heavenly Father, I pray that you continue to be with my sister Julie though this week. Help her to remain confident in the message that You have given her to share. I pray that she will not try to continually tweak her message, but that she would continue to internalize it so she barely needs to reference her notes. Continue to speak to Julie this week as she prepares to speak to others. In Your name we pray, amen.”
Sue 9/18/18 at 7:48am: “Good Morning friend! I have been praying for you each day. God delights in doing surprising things…things that we can not imagine. I pray that the words that God gives you will be exactly what one or two or three or more women need at that exact moment of their lives. ‘Oh give me faith and faith’s increase; finish the work begun in me. Preserve my soul in perfect peace, and let me always rest on thee’ Charles Wesley. Blessings upon you Julie.”
MarShondria 9/19/18 2:05am “Lord, I thank you for Julie’s heart of gratitude and desire in wanting to communicate Your words well. As she continues to internalize the message you’ve given her; may she recite it in a way that empowers her, draws out her boldness, and helps her to roar like the mighty lion of Judah that You are. May the words flow from her lips like honey and taste ever sweet in her tongue. Amen”
Eileen 9/19/18 6:26am “I love that you are speaking at this conference!! This verse has really spoken to my heart as well. I will be praying for you on Saturday. I know God will use you to draw the women closer to His heart for them! ‘Whoever (Julie) believes in Me, as the scriptures said, out of her heart will flow rivers of living water‘ John 7:38″
Jodi 9/19/18 6:53am “Lord, I ask for extra protection for Julie today. As the enemy is trying so hard to finagle a way in. Cover her with your wings. May your truth shine brightly, dissolving all darkness. May she place all her worries and cares in your hands, having complete confidence and trust in your timing and ways”
Eileen 9/22/18 7:02am “Praying that God would anoint your heart and mouth as you speak today. That he would give you words of light & life that will penetrate in the hearts of the women. In Jesus name I break off any spirit of fear, doubt, or comparison over Julie. She is your mouthpiece chosen specifically for this time.”
It was truly a rich and lavish gift to have these women share their prayers with me, for me, and over me. These prayers meant so much to me that I combined them together on one page and printed them off. I carried them with me and read through them each time I read through my speaking notes.
I am so very grateful, deeply appreciative, and can not say thank you enough to these women! Thank you Jodi, Eileen, MarShondria, and Sue!!! I wish I could thank by name specifically each person who was praying for me.
In this moment because I do not have a certified list of all who were praying for me, but I can make a blanket statement through my blog that I am so very, very grateful for your prayers! I also want to say that the prayers of preparation have blossomed into a bouquet of powerful praise to the Lord.
I wish I had a more solid report of the outcome of the words I shared, the way that hearts were impacted, the meaning that was imparted. For that feedback you would have to talk with someone who was there to see and hear me speak. I feel so unqualified to provide any commentary on the response.
What I do fully know is this: the prayers that helped me prepare were powerful. The way the words of these women, who are unconnected in life’s daily activities, were woven together on a loom of love shaped the experience of the weekend into a blanket that covered and comforted all who came.
The credit for anything that comes of this goes to the glory of God whose goodness flows just as greatly through all the prayers of preparation as the words that were spoken by one woman like me. Praise God for the gift of preparing in prayer.
Live it Out
What are you preparing for in your life right now? Is it a project at work, an exam at school, a move, a life transition, a marriage, a birth, an adoption, a career transition, a doctors appointment, or a scheduled event?
Who do you know who could partner with you in prayer in your time of preparation?
Take the time to ASK people to pray for you, and to share their prayers with you.
If you are not sure who to ask, I offer up myself as an option. You are more than welcome to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your requests.
May our greatest burden of preparation be in prayer so that our experiences may transform preparation to powerful praise.
Pray Through It
It may seem a bit silly for me to pray about praying, but Lord, You are an infinite God who is so far beyond the scope of our limited minds that every prayer we pray allows us an opportunity to experience a great breadth of Your nature. So help us to not pass by opportunities to pray with each other.
It is so easy Lord, to become overwhelmed and focused on the tasks of preparation that we neglect to pray over our plans, and to have others pray for us. Help us to live out Colossians 4:2 (NIV) ‘Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.’
In the treasured, faithful, and powerful name of Jesus, amen.