I remember the first time I told anyone outside my family about my same-sex attraction. A friend suggested we go and talk with a couple of guys from the church I’d just started attending. I was a nervous wreck thinking about it for a couple days.
But it was so good to confess and talk about my struggle! It went better than I could have imagined.
The thing that stands out most in my memory from that night is that we prayed before we left.
I often think about the Scripture that says: Confess your sins one to another, and pray … that ye might be healed.
I’m not sure I completely understand how that works yet…
As far as I know, I’m not “healed.” Or am I? Perhaps I’ve experienced more healing than I know about.
Do you think part of the healing comes from the actual act of praying?
Sometimes I call a friend on the phone and we pray before hanging up. Sometimes I pray with my roommates before we go to sleep. Another favorite moment is going to dinner with a friend or just hanging for the evening, and before parting, taking time for prayer.
I’ve probably taken praying together for granted all too often. As I’ve thought about it, I’ve noticed a couple different aspects of praying.
I’ve been thinking specifically about the unique power in the fact that I go to God with brothers at my side.
It’s like having a family member with you at the emergency room or an attorney by your side in a courtroom.
Here are a few things I’ve noticed about prayer. Maybe you can add to this list, but when we pray together, we agree in three major ways.
1. When we pray together, we agree that we stand in need.
We don’t have life all figured out. OSA or SSA — we need help.
I mean, going to prayer is primarily an act of humility. Why is it that sometimes it’s just so hard to admit we need help?
2. When we pray together, we acknowledge who our sustainer really is.
We’re totally indebted to worship Jehovah Jireh!
3. When we pray together, we really do encourage each other.
Whenever we have grand “prayer meetings” at church, we tend to be a little dispassionate with our “requests.” Maybe we’re walking a thin line between sharing all our “concerns” and outright gossip!
But in more heartfelt prayer times, if I pray for you, or vice versa, we thank God for the other’s positive attributes, his gifts and his pursuits, and then extend blessings to each other. I have yet to participate in prayer with a brother when he slanders me! We can also intercede for each other to the perfect Intercessor.
This seems like a simple, cliche post, incomplete in many ways. However, I hope it encourages you guys to keep going to the throne room.
Maybe you feel like prayer isn’t really helping you. I’d say I’ve felt that way, too.
But let’s not walk sans prayer — and let’s not do life without brothers!
What role does prayer play in your daily battles? Do you have a story to share of prayer with another brother in Christ? How often do you pray together with other believers?
* Photo courtesy sacks08, Creative Commons.