by Rick Duncan, CVC Founding Pastor
Sometimes it is helpful to use the written prayers of others – particularly when those prayers are Scripture-fed and Spirit-led – as fuel for our own.
Some believers object to this practice. They feel that if we pray prayers that have been written by someone else, it will mean that we are not offering up prayers from our own hearts. That certainly might be true. But it is not necessarily true.
Many of the Psalms are prayers that have been recorded for us so that we may learn how to pray like the Psalmist prayed. Jesus Himself gave us a model prayer. The apostle Paul wrote prayers in his epistles that have served as models for many people down thorough the centuries.
The great pastor and commentator of yesteryear, Matthew Henry, wrote a book filled with written prayers called A Method of Prayer. The Valley of Vision is a collection of Puritan prayers. A Guide to Daily Prayer is a book written by a Scottish pastor and is filled with morning and evening prayers for each day of the month.
So, it is entirely appropriate for us to use prayers that have been written by others.
As we do we can make sure that they are sound theologically, are filled with Scriptural truth, are expressing the sentiments of our own hearts, and are capable of being rephrased in our own words. This is what will keep our prayers from becoming “vain repetition.”
With that in mind, below is a prayer that might help you use some truths from Luke 11:14-26 in order to pray for someone you know who has been held captive by the enemy and is not living a Christ-honoring, flourishing life.
Lord Jesus, I praise You for being Strong and Mighty. You alone are the way, the truth, and the life. Help me be someone who gathers with You and for You. Lord, I am grieved because __________ has not encountered You and is not yet living an abundant, flourishing life. I honor You as the Stronger One who can drive out the enemy, the strong man, in his/her life. I ask You to take away __________’s blindness so that he/she can clearly see the beauty of Jesus. Open his/her lips to give You praise. May __________ open the door of his/her life and allow You to come in and to furnish his/her life with all the good things of the Spirit of God. Lead us to an abundant, flourishing life both now and forevermore. Amen.