The recurring lesson the Lord has been teaching me about prayer over the last two years has been related to the importance of praying with others. For as long as I’ve been praying, praying with others felt very much like something extra, but not a necessity. But that changed after hard seasons last year where I literally felt carried by not only having people pray for me but to actually hear those prayers.
If you need more convincing of the benefits of praying with others, check out this post.
If you’re like many of us, convinced it is important but not sure how to actually make it happen, I hope this provides an idea or two that you can incorporate into your current stage of life.
Here are 17 ways to get started! Leave a comment if you have any other ideas or tell us what idea you want to try.
1. Have a standing date for a walk with a neighbor and pray
This is perfect for the person who either already has a habit of walking with someone or has a desire to also make a habit of getting more active. If it’s not a neighbor, ask a friend and meet at a park or trail, and spend part of the time praying.
2. Pray before or after you hit the tennis courts with a friend
This can go for any activity you do consistently with a friend but what about the sweet spot of time while you pack up your rackets and balls and sit down for some water and to cool off? I go to the sauna at my gym often and think it’d be pretty cool to pray in there with a friend if there weren’t others in there.
3. Pray before bed with kids
You may already be doing this! If so, I want to throw this in as a quick reminder that even though this may not feel the same as praying with others, it is! If you aren’t doing this with kids yet, definitely commit to making prayer happen at bedtime. And I’m betting your firstborn or rule follower child will help you remember like mine does when I forget anything! 😜 After I’ve interviewed 15+ prayer warriors for our podcast, Prayer in a Noisy World, I’m amazed by how much hearing the prayers of others influences those who learned to pray. How cool we can do this with our kids! Want more advice on teaching kids to pray? Check out this post!!
4. Pray before bed with your spouse
If your husband is a believer, make a point to end the day with prayer and share a few highlights from the day. It’s really easy for our spouse to become the person we are most negative with or dumping only problems on. My own husband really appreciates sharing a few things we are grateful for from the day. And then we make time to pray!
5. Meet with fellow church members in between services to pray
The thing I’ve recently been learning that is piggybacking on this lesson to pray more with others is prayingn more with others for the church and our pastors. The spiritual warfare and the weariness from leading through a pandemic is heavy! We need to cover our churches in prayer. What if you started a little prayer time between services or walked the aisles of the sanctuary with someone else before everyone arrived?
6. Pray with other moms in the carline at school
Get to school 30 minutes early, park in the carline and hop in your friend’s car or sit outside if it’s a pretty day and spend a little time praying for your kids. I love this one because it reminds me that finding these little opportunities to pray in our full lives is possible, we just have to get creative.
7. Meet with moms after dropping kids off at Mother’s Day Out
Think about it. You’re both dropping off at the same time so you can both commit to meeting at the same time each week, no trying to finagle schedules. You can pray for 5 minutes in the parking if you’ve both got things to get to or grab a coffee down the street if you’ve got more time.
8. Get together with a coworker before work or during lunch break once a week
Think of the people you are already around daily and plan a time once a week to pray. If you work a really intense or draining job or your boss or coworkers are unpleasant and you have another believer in your office, this could be so life-giving to your work days!
9. Call an out-of-town friend during your commute
Does your best friend that you never get to see have a commute around the same time you’re available or in your car? Plan a time once a week or even at the beginning of each month if once a week isn’t doable, to catch up on life and pray together on the phone.
10. Find a prayer partner in our VMP Society Facebook group
If you love all these ideas but feel at a loss of who to ask, check our FB group to see if anyone would like to pair up virtually. We had two ladies in our Pray Confidently and Consistently launch team pair up and they are still going strong. I would also pray about opportunities to find someone to pray within your everyday life too!
11. Host a prayer walk at school each quarter
Grab some other mommas and walk the campus and pray for teachers as you pass their door. Cover the campus, kids and administration in prayer as you walk.
12. Praying before team meetings
This may sound super obvious if you work at a church but my bet is even in ministry, it can be easy to forget the opportunity we have to pray before a budget meeting or planning meeting for the next VBS. If you run a Christian business or if not, but know your team well enough to know that praying together would be a good idea, do it. We do this for our monthly team meetings and it’s so good to just reorient our hearts especially when I arrive frazzled and not ready to make decisions.
13. Walking to class together
If you’re in college and always find a friend walking to class in the same direction, you could meet up a few minutes early in a quiet spot and pray. Even picturing two college students, head bowed in the middle of the quad gets me emotional. What a light!
14. Go to church each week
Ok. This is pretty basic but hey, church bodies pray together each service! This is one of the simplest ways we get can experience the prayers of others over us but it’s also an opportunity to lift our voices in prayer for others simultaneously.
The Who? What? When? Where? How? of returning to Church
15. Join a weekly prayer group
I can’t forget to mention this one! If you feel unsure about praying with others, I get it! That’s a super common concern for many in our community. It’s why we have a whole module on praying with others in our online course. If this is a real concern, grab the Conversational Prayer module here. We cover why praying with others is important as well as 7 tips for overcoming our fear of praying with others.
If praying with others seems like a good idea but you want to be learning about prayer at the same time, I cannot recommend our Pray Confidently and Consistently Together guide enough! Basically, you spend 9 weeks going through the content of my book on prayer while starting to pray in small increments and slowly increase over the group.
Here are two more points that aren’t scheduled but would help increase the number of times we get to pray with others.
16. Start a prayer chain
In our grandmother’s day, prayer chains consisted of a group of ladies who would be notified if there was a prayer request in the church. The leader would get the call if there was an urgent request and she’d call another lady, who would call another lady and so it would go till all the prayer chain was notified and praying. This was obviously pre-mass emails and text messages but I love this idea so much. For your church, organization, or group, it may look like getting an email from church and immediately texting a prayer partner to pray together for the request. It could be just a few minutes spur of the moment.
17. When someone shares a request, pray with them in that moment
We often have people ask us to pray for them and it’s literally one of the most common struggles for all of us to actually remember to pray. What if instead of telling them we will pray, we ask if we can pray for them right there? If it’s a heavy topic, be sensitive to not pray too long or too in-depth if it would be overwhelming emotionally. I cannot tell you how many times I’ve done this and heard how meaningful it was to hear that prayer for them.
I hope this list was helpful!! Take what works and forget the rest. Can’t do a weekly thing? Try monthly and focus on being consistent. You can always ratchet it up to once a week if it goes well.
And leave a comment if you have other ideas of how you’ve made time to pray with others!