Have you ever tried to pray for yourself and while doing that you remember your mummy and daddy, and then you feel bad for leaving your siblings out (if you have siblings), then you remember your nice uncles and aunties but it’s not fair so you pray for your relatives altogether and before you know it you are praying for the whole world!?. This you?
Alright, so dictionary defines intercession as “the act of intervening or mediating between two parties. A prayer to God on behalf of another person.”
We understand that when we put our needs and requests aside (we will always have something we personally want from God) and pray for others -family, friends, lost souls, the church, our nation etc- then we are interceding for them.
Is It Necessary to Pray for Others?
You might think you have too much troubles and praying for someone that is not you is not high on the list but this, praying for others, interceding, is a command from God (Matthew 5:44, Galatians 6:2) and you are not just to pray for your enemies but even for authorities presiding over you (1Timothy 2:3-4), for fellow believers (James 5:16), and for others.
One of the best scenes of intercession in the bible is the part where Jesus prayed for us before he died (John 17:18-21). Jesus actually prayed for all of us, He prayed for you and me!” Now if we are to be Christ-like, then praying for others is one important command from God that we must obey.
Even the lost souls did not miss out on been in his prayer, why would they even? Afterall, it is because of them He came to the world. “I am praying not only for these disciples but also for all who will ever believe in me through their message.”
John 17:20 NLT
Paul also said a lot on the matter, he was always admonishing believers to pray for each other (1Timothy 2:1), and at some point he even asked that they prayed for him, “And pray for me, too. Ask God to give me the right words so I can boldly explain God’s mysterious plan that the Good News is for Jews and Gentiles alike. I am in chains now, still preaching this message as God’s ambassador. So pray that I will keep on speaking boldly for him, as I should.” (Ephesians 6:19-20 NLT).
How Do You Pray for Others?
“Pray without ceasing” does not apply to praying about/for ourselves alone, it also applied to praying for others. We pray for them because we love them.
You can start by asking Jesus to tell you what to pray for them. That is his area of expertise. It may not be what you expect. Be ready and available to be the answer to that person’s problem.
Let the person(s) know you are praying for them and ask them if there’s anything they would like you to pray for.
Benefits of Praying for Others
The peace of God is one of the beautiful gains of praying. God works in and on our hearts when we pray. God uses our intercession to help us grow spiritually. Praying for others helps us to be more burdened about ministering to others. It enhances our level of trust and dependency in God.
In the end, Jesus is our role model for everything thing even prayer. Hebrews 4:14 says “Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess.”
Jesus is our High Priest, sitting on the right hand side of Abba, ever interceding on our behalf. Whenever we pray for others, we are imitating the way Jesus prayed and prays for us. Also we reflect God’s kindness and compassion when we pray for others.
Finally, instead of saying, “I’ll pray for you or I’ll pray about this this that later”. Pray about it on spot, immediately it/they come to mind, pray about it lest you forget.