This week, I’m not asking you so much to pray for your marriage — although you should keep doing that! — but I want to focus instead on praying for other readers.
In the comments and emails I receive, I see the wide variety of questions, struggles, and victories couples have in the area of sexual intimacy. If you read through comment threads on marriage blogs, you see some of that as well.
From time to time, I will answer someone with “I’m saying a prayer for your situation.” And then I do it, right then and there.
I used to say, “I’ll pray” or “I’ll be praying,” but I have to admit that I did a very poor job of tracking who I wanted to be praying for. Some people are great at this, but what organizational skills I have don’t really extend to my prayer life. Instead I found that it was better to pray for the couple when I felt emotionally moved in the moment and when their story was fresh on my mind.
Sometimes, couples are dealing with great conflict over sexual intimacy in the marriage, sometimes it’s a blind spot one spouse has regarding sex, sometimes it’s a lack of communication or bad theology, and sometimes — God be praised! — it’s redemption and healing in the marriage bed. All of these circumstances are worth bringing before God and laying them at His feet.
But while much of our prayer is done privately, there is power in a group praying together for the same thing.
“‘Again, truly I tell you that if two of you on earth agree about anything they ask for, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them‘” (Matthew 18:19-20).
In Jesus’s direct teachings about prayer, 33 of the 37 times he uses the plural “you.” (You know, if the Bible would adopt the Southern “y’all,” we could clear all that up.) It’s also interesting that the Lord’s model prayer, part of the Sermon on the Mount, uses the plural: “Our Father…Give us today our daily bread…Lead us not into temptation…”
I just love those comments when one reader offers to pray for another reader. Because I think we’re tapping into something really amazing when several people pray for someone. Some possible benefits are:
- The peace and hope a reader feels when they know others are praying for them.
- The community we all feel when we pray for one another.
- The power that God unleashes when we come together in His name. (See Acts 4:23-31.)
Marriage bloggers do pray for their readers. But I invite you to pray for them too.
Pray that those seeking marriage help find the blog, book, or other resource they need. Pray that those who read this blog, and others, come with open hearts and minds, truly desiring God’s design for sex in marriage. Pray that those struggling in their marriage will find practical answers, emotional support, spiritual guidance, and personal healing. Pray that sexual temptations will be overcome. Pray that those who have begun the process of improving their sexual intimacy will have the strength and perseverance to continue along that path. Pray that those who find victory will give glory to God and share their testimony with others.
And if while reading through the comments, you are touched by someone’s situation, say a prayer for the couple right then and there. You’re also welcome to reply to that comment (with your name or something anonymous like “A Friend”) and tell that person you’re praying.
Let’s pray for each other — for individuals, for marriages, and for marriage beds.