You've most likely experienced a similar scenario - Bible study is winding down. As you being to pack up your things, the leader asks if anyone has any prayer requests...two hours later tummies are rumbling and everyone's looking at their watches while the "sharing" continues. Please don't misunderstand. It's not that we don't care about what's going on in the lives of those around us, but too much information can leave us wondering what the heck we're really suppose to be praying for!
A friend recently introduced me to one word prayers. Sure the concept is simply, but I found it to be extremely profound and incredibly helpful in praying for people.
How would you sum up your most important/intimate prayer need(s) in a WORD?
One word, no explanation needed. I really had to stop and think about it. Sure, I've got my list, but what is the central theme running through them all? This approach forces you to look at what's important. The benefit to the person praying for you is that it frees them from knowing all the details. Again, it's not that I don't care about the details of a friend's life...sure I do. But if I know every detail of a particular situation, I may be tempted to pray in a certain way, with a bias as to how the situation needs to be resolved. By praying a single word for a friend, I take God out of any box and pray for Him to work in the way He deems best.
Think how this would work in your small group, mom's prayer group or with your best girlfriends. Instead of remembering five different situations and everything that went with it, you simply remember five different words, each one special to a particular person. As the Lord brings that person to mind throughout the day/week you simply pray their word for them. The Lord knows the details and will work accordingly.
As I thought about the things going on in my life over the past few weeks, I finally summed it up with the word RELENQUISH. That one word means a whole host of things and actually applies to several different situations, all of which God sees and understands. He understands and is moving even on levels I don't yet grasp. It's comforting to know I have a friend who is praying that word with me this week and I can see Him working already.
How about you? What would your word be? Leave me a comment with your word and I'll pray for you this week.