I am always amazed by the power of prayer. I meet together with a small group from my faith community every Monday night. Some of us have been meeting together for more than three years. Each week at the end of our time together we share prayer requests, and we record them on a spreadsheet we save online so everyone can access it. Recently we prayed our 588th prayer. From time to time we go back through the list and update requests or celebrate the prayers God has answered. Each week I look forward to this time of prayer.
How about you? Who are people you spend time regularly praying with? This month, try out some of the group prayer ideas below with your family or with other people in your faith community. As you pray, remember to look for ways that God is on the move, showing up and responding to your prayers.
Electricity Prayer: This type of prayer is fun with a group of friends. It is a great way to allow kids to feel included even though they may not want to pray out loud. First, have everyone sit or stand in a circle and hold hands. One person starts by praying out loud, and as soon as she finishes, she squeezes the hand of the person to her right. That person can decide if he wants to pray out loud or if he wants to pass. Either when he is finished praying or when he chooses to pass, he squeezes the hand of the person on his right. This continues around the circle until it gets back to the person who began. She then closes by saying, “In Jesus’ name, amen.”
Popcorn Prayer: My small group loves popcorn prayers. Each week, the group leader asks for someone to open up the prayer time. Then the leader always closes. The person who volunteered to open prays out loud, and after he finishes anyone else in the group can randomly decide to jump in and pray. There is no order, so it is like the different people are “popping” in their prayers. Then, after it is quiet for a minute or so, the leader closes the time in prayer.
Index Card Prayers: This kind of prayer is a great way to keep praying throughout the week. While you’re gathered together, have everyone write her name and her prayer requests for that week on an index card. Then have one person decide how the index cards will be passed around. She can say, “Pass it five people to the right and two to the left.” Or she can say, “Everyone place your card in the middle and grab someone else’s card.” You can distribute the cards however works best for your group. Then, throughout the week, each person prays for the requests she received on the index card she picked up. If you want to take this a step further you can also have each person contact the person whose card she received and offer encouragement or ask for updates to the request.
Person-on-Your-Left Prayer: When your group is ready to pray, have everyone sit or stand in a circle. Allow people to share prayer requests out loud, and tell the group that each person should be focusing on the request of the person to his left. After everyone is done sharing, the leader begins the time of prayer by praying for the person to his left. Then that person prays for the person to his left and so on. Note: For this kind of prayer time to work everyone needs to feel comfortable praying out loud.
My prayer for you this month is that you would be willing to try new ways of praying with your faith community. May God make Himself known to your group as you pray. What a gift that we serve a God who hears our prayers.