Beloved, pray for us. - 1 Thessalonians 5:25 (NRSV)
Thoughts and prayers get a bad rap these days, but I am here to testify to the power of being prayed for.
Recently I was preparing to take on an important and intimidating task. I reached out to some folks, asking them to pray for me and everyone involved. A few people responded with offers of encouragement and prayers, which meant a lot to me.
One person invited me to text her as I was walking into the “lion’s den.” Once she heard from me, she said, she would stop whatever she was doing to pray.
I texted her, and let me tell you: Knowing someone was praying for me as I entered that challenging situation empowered me. I felt not only the power of prayer, but also the power of connection and the power of presence.
Maybe your life is stress-free, but many of us live in a constant state of worry. Some of us don’t know if we can make it through another day. Some of us don’t know how we’re going to pay this month’s bills. More than a few of us feel disconnected and disempowered. And we all have our rough days.
What if, as you approached your difficult task or exciting moment, you reached out to someone and asked for prayer? What if, when you knew of someone facing a challenge, you offered to pray for them in the moment?
Who knows how you (and they) might be changed? Who is to say what might come of that intimate connection through prayer? Wouldn’t it be wonderful to find out?
Merciful One who hears all our prayers, fill us with the power of being prayed for.
Vicki Kemper is the Pastor of First Congregational, UCC, of Amherst, Massachusetts.