Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise. Is anyone among you sick? Let them call the elders of the church to pray over them and anoint them with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise them up. If they have sinned, they will be forgiven. Therefore, confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective. James 5:13-16
I often get emails or texts from people to thank me for praying for them. These individuals thanked me because they believe prayer works. Their confidence in prayer and their faith in the God who answers prayer give them the confidence to overcome their struggles, find healing when they are sick, or deliverance in their times of trouble.
Whenever I am sick, I call the saints to pray for me and trust that I will get better. Whatever trouble I face, or the burden that threatens me, I remain steadfast in faith because I know somebody is praying for me. Indeed, the thought that somebody is praying for me is empowering, encouraging, and redemptive. I face my challenges with hope and confidence when I know others are praying for me.
It is necessary to tell other people we are praying for them. Because prayer is the love language of God, praying for others indicates our love for them and our confidence in the God who answers prayer. The love people sense when we intercede for them is therapeutic in scope. That is, it enables them to face their burden with confidence and hope thus increasing their ability to recover.
The thought that my mother was praying for me helped me make it through many challenging times. My mother’s prayer gave me the confidence to make it through college and graduate school. When I was sick, I called momma and knew I was going to recover quickly because I knew she was praying for me.
Parents should let their children know there are praying for them. Husbands or wives should let one another know they are praying for each other. A caring friend should let you know they are praying for you, as well as you let them know you are praying for them. Even the unsaved want to hear that people are praying for them.
In today’s text, James reminds believers to pray fervently for one another in every circumstance. James was confident about the efficacy of prayer. He knew that adding prayer to any human dynamic was transformative and therapeutic.
People who have others praying for them recover faster from sickness. They fare better in dealing with life’s challenges. They have more joy in sorrow and are more confident when facing difficult circumstances.
My siblings and I have this tradition where we call whoever among us is having a birthday to pray for them. We all look forward to that prayer every year, as it always makes our birthday experience more rewarding and fulfilling. There were a couple of times when my birthday experience did not start out well, but the moment my siblings called to pray for me, my disposition changed, and my joy was fully restored.
You and I can release hope, confidence, joy, financial favor, or deliverance in the life of others simply by telling them we are praying for them and following that promise with intercession on their behalf. The best gift you can give those in your sphere of influence is prayer. So, do not hesitate to let them know you are praying for them.
Questions for Personal Reflection
How important is it to you that others are praying for you?
How often do you let people know you are praying for them, and take the time to actually do so?
Prayer- Blessed Lord, I am praying for those who are struggling with life’s burdens, or are grieving the loss of a loved one, or facing financial hardships. May you strengthen them in their time of need and deliver them from their struggles. I thank you for those who are praying for me. May they experience the fullness of your favor in their lives and bear fruits of righteousness for your name’s sake.