The Upper Room devotional reflection for Thursday, June 9, 2022, comes to us from Gerald H. Ihle of Pennsylvania.
Are any of you suffering? They should pray. Are any cheerful? They should sing songs of praise. Are any among your sick? They should call for the elders of the church and have them pray over them, anointing them with oil in the name of the Lord. The prayer of faith will save the sick, and the Lord will raise them up; and anyone who has committed sins will be forgiven. Therefore confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, so that you may be healed. The prayer of the righteous is powerful and effective. James 5:13-16 NIV
“Over 150 Names”
Some years ago after retiring as a pastor, I started to make a list of people to pray for. I couldn’t remember the increasing number of names I was concerned about, so I used my computer to record the names – to refresh my memory. I found that new names needed to be added constantly, and that the names of those who had recovered could be removed after a prayer of thanksgiving. Finally, I ended up with an active list of over 150 names, which I still update regularly.
I carry my list with me all the time. When I wake up during the night, I spend time praying for those who circumstances seem to be a priority. With my list close at hand, I can pray for people at any time of day. And I have found that praying for other people who need God’s healing helps to take my mind of my own concerns. Sometimes I tell people, “You’re on my prayer list.” And often they seem strengthened just knowing someone is praying for them. Who could benefit from your prayers? Remember, Jesus told us, “I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Father may be glorified in the Son” (Jn 14:13).
Opportunities to pray for those about whom we are concerned abound every day. Everyone needs to be lifted in prayer, and the Book of James reminds us to pray for those who are in particular need. And Gerald Ihle helps us to remember that there are many opportunities to offer those prayers. We are offered many opportunities to concentrate on prayers for others. For instance, when we are doing routine tasks like mowing the lawn or washing dishes. Perhaps, there are other moments in our routine days that we can focus our prayers on those who are in need. I invite you to consider times in your days that you can concentrate on praying for those you know about whom you are concerned.
Thank You, God, for hearing our prayers. We pray always in the blessed name of your dear Son, Jesus. Amen.
--Gerald H. Ihle
Thought for the Day:
My spare moments offer opportunities to pray for others.
Jesus said, “I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail.”
Luke 22:32 (NIV)