Search Results for: prayer for lost

Great is Thy Faithfulness

Thanks to all who prayed for my trip to Cuba and contributed the funds to make it all possible. I returned early this morning, so I’m operating on only four hours of sleep. But I wanted you to know I’m home safe and sound and that the trip was amazingly fruitful in so many ways. I continue to be amazed at what the Lord is doing there and by the enthusiasm the people have for God’s Word. While I heard dozens of wonderful testimonies and amazing stories of answered prayer and God’s provision, one of the highlights for me was hearing the Cubans worship. I’ve never heard any group of people anywhere else in the world sing as loudly and as passionately as the Cuban Christians. I nearly lost it emotionally hearing them sing the old hymn, “Great is Thy Faithfulness,” because I realized that these people have suffered and persevered through much difficulty and yet they eagerly sing from the top of their lungs about God’s faithfulness. I went there to teach, but came away having learned much about offering a sacrifice of thanksgiving. (For more pix, see my Facebook pages).

Praying for Lost Loved Ones, Part 4

Yesterday as I fasted and prayed for loved ones who don’t yet know the Lord, I came across this great quote from Scot McKnight in the current issue of “Conversations” magazine:

Fasting is the body talking what the spirit yearns for, what the soul longs for, and what the minds knows to be true. It is body talk—not the body simply talking for the spirit, for the mind, or for the soul in some symbolic way, but for the person, the whole person, to express herself or himself completely.

For those of us who carry a heavy burden for that lost son, daughter, husband, wife, or friend, the yearning feels like an ache in the body. It hurts all the way down to your toes; stomach tied up in knots.

That’s why many of us turn to fasting. It focuses our entire being on that which we most desire with a sense of prayerful urgency. May we continue to be fervent in prayer for those lost loved ones.

Praying for Lost Loved Ones, Part 3

Judging from the response, my recent blog entries about praying for lost loved ones seem to have hit a chord with many. Some of you shared painful stories about a son or daughter who’s turned prodigal or a husband or wife who shares no interest whatsoever in spiritual things. Some of you have been praying for a family member for years with little or no visible signs of progress.

In spite of the difficulties, prayer continues to be our most effective weapon on behalf of the lost. A few days ago, I wrote a prayer based on all the Bible verses I pray through on my fast days. If you’re looking for a fresh approach, try inserting the name of a loved one or friend in the prayer below. Also, don’t feel like you have to pray the entire prayer in one setting. The three paragraphs can be prayed at meal times or divided up however you want.

Lord, I praise you as my God and Savior and thank you that you desire for  _______ to be saved and to come to know you even more than I do (1 Timothy 2:3-4). I thank you that it is not your wish for _______ to perish, but that he/she reaches repentance (2 Peter 3:9). Lord, in your kindness, please lead _______ to repentance (Romans 2:4); for you came to earth not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance (Luke 5:32). Please grant _______ a godly grief that produces true repentance that leads to salvation (2 Corinthians 7:10). When Jesus said, “with God all things are possible” (Matthew 19:23-26), he was originally referring to how difficult it is for a rich man who’s far from God to enter heaven. So, Lord, even though _______ is far from you right now, I do not lose hope. With you, all things are possible.

Father, please deliver _______ from the domain of darkness and transfer him/her to the kingdom of your beloved Son that he might experience redemption and the forgiveness of sins (Colossians 1:13-14). I ask that you wage war on behalf of _______’s soul; that you destroy the strongholds in his/her life—the arguments and lofty opinions—that hinder him/her from knowing you (2 Corinthians 10:4-5). Destroy the works of the devil in _______’s life (1 John 3:8) and contend with all ungodly influences that conspire to keep _______ away from you (Isaiah 49:25). Convict him/her concerning sin and the rightness of your ways. May he/she realize that some day he/she is going to stand before you in judgment (John 16:8). Set before him/her life and death, blessing and curse and help him/her to choose life—-to love you, obey your voice, and hold fast to you and your way (Deuteronomy 30:19-20). Reveal to _______ that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God (Matthew 16:16-17).

Jesus, you came to seek and save the lost (Luke 19:10). Please seek out _______ and save him/her. Give him/her a heart to know you, to come/return to you with his/her whole heart (Jeremiah 24:7). Bring back into your fold my strayed son/daughter/husband/wife/friend (Ezekiel 34:16). Draw _______ close to Jesus (John 6:44). Call him/her into a saving relationship with Christ (1 Corinthians 1:9). By your will, bestow on him/her the right to become your child (John 1:12-13). By your great mercy, grant that _______ be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead (1 Peter 1:3). Open his/her eyes that he/she may turn from darkness to light and from the power of Satan to God, to receive forgiveness of sins, and become part of a vibrant community of believers (Acts 26:18). Give _______ a spirit of wisdom and revelation to know you; may the eyes of his/her heart be enlightened to know the hope you have called us to as well as the glorious riches of the inheritance we have in you (Ephesians 1:17-19). Open his/her heart to pay attention to whatever Scriptures are already planted in his/her mind (Acts 16:14). Open his/her mind to understand your word in fresh and exciting ways (Luke 24:45) and to know that you are the one true God and source of eternal life (1 John 5:20). Amen.

Praying for Lost Loved Ones, Part 2

When it comes to evangelism, prayer is our most powerful strategy and Scripture our most significant weapon. As promised a few days ago, I’m posting a list of Bible verses I’ve found helpful in praying for those who don’t yet know Christ (see below). You could pray through the list in one sitting or spread them out over a day or several days. Having prayed these Scriptures over the years, I’ve arranged them in a progression that’s logical to me, beginning with references to God’s heart for lost people (1 Timothy 2:3-4 and 2 Peter 3:9). But feel free to play around with the order if you want.

My wife and I set aside Thursday as the day we pray for family members who aren’t walking with the Lord. Feel free to send us first names of those for whom you feel especially burdened and we’ll add them to our list this Thursday.

Praying for the lost is an arduous task involving, in some cases, years—even decades—of perseverance and dedication. The following Scriptures have bolstered my faith and kept me motivated to pray for the unsaved—especially those near and dear to me.

  • 1 Timothy 2:3-4
  • 2 Peter 3:9
  • Romans 2:4
  • Luke 5:32
  • John 16:8
  • 2 Corinthians 7:10
  • Deuteronomy 30:19-20
  • 2 Corinthians 10:4-5
  • Isaiah 49:25
  • Matthew 19:23-26
  • Matthew 16:16-17
  • Jeremiah 24:7
  • Luke 19:10
  • Ezekiel 34:16
  • John 6:44
  • 1 Corinthians 1:9
  • John 1:12-13
  • Colossians 1:13-14
  • 1 John 3:8
  • Acts 26:18
  • Ephesians 1:17-19
  • Acts 16:14
  • Luke 24:45
  • 1 John 5:20

Praying for Lost Loved Ones

I believe that praying for the lost is serious business. It is spiritual battle at its most feverish pitch. I can’t think of a spiritual discipline that has stretched my faith and tested my willpower more than interceding on behalf of those who don’t yet know Christ. It calls for ongoing commitment, intense perseverance, and unwavering faith. Over the years, I’ve rejoiced when anyone on my prayer list came to faith. However, there are some on that list for whom I’ve been praying for over two decades and see little or no progress. One thing I’ve learned about praying for lost souls is that it’s definitely not for the faint of heart or sparse of spirit. It is the work of true prayer warriors.

Many of us carry a heavy burden and an acute sense of urgency for lost family members. We’ve witnessed, we’ve shared, but it seems to fall on deaf ears or thud against hardened hearts. Prayers for those near and dear are often agonized pleas laced with hot tears. Every Thursday for the last two years, my wife Sue and I have been fasting and praying for lost family members. We forego breakfast and lunch, pray at various times throughout the day, and then come together late afternoon for one last round of prayer. Afterward Sue makes us a light salad dinner. I’d like to invite you to join us next Thursday or any day next week in praying for lost loved ones. In fact, if you send us first names of relatives and family members you’d like us to pray for, we’ll add them to the list. Over the coming weekend, I’ll send out a list of Scripture verses I use in praying for unbelieving friends and relatives. If it’s helpful, feel free to use it. Let’s pool our efforts together next week and bombard heaven with intercessions for lost husbands, wives, mothers, fathers, and children who are far from Christ.

Articles and Links

FREE ARTICLES

Spiritual Assessment for Artists

This is a tool I’ve developed over the years as a means for artists to evaluate how they’re doing spiritually.

Spiritual Assessment for Artists (pdf)

Spiritual Assessment for Artists (Word Document)

Prayer for Lost Loved Ones

I’ve had numerous requests for copies of this prayer, so I thought I’d make it available. It contains 27 Scripture references. When you click on the Word document, it’ll download to your computer and you can customize it by typing in the name of the person you’re praying for. When you click on the pdf version, the file should open up on your computer and you can print it from there. To see my original posts about fasting and praying for lost loved ones, click here.

Prayer for Lost Loved Ones (pdf)

Prayer for Lost Loved Ones (Word Document)

FAVORITE LINKS

Heart of the Artist Missions

Heart of the Artist Missions is a not for profit ministry to serve artists in under-resourced Christian churches around the world.

Transforming Center

I lead worship for the Transforming Center, a retreat ministry which cares for the souls of pastors, worship leaders, and other church leaders. Retreats are led by Ruth Barton, author of Invitation to Solitude and Silence and Strengthening the Soul of Your Leadership.

Nebraska Christian College

Rory heads up the Worship Arts Department at NC and teaches courses on worship and spiritual formation for artists.

Harvest Bible Chapel

Rory’s home church where Dr. James MacDonald is Senior Pastor.

Harvest Bible Fellowship

Harvest Bible Fellowship is the family of churches under the Harvest umbrella.