How to pray for the lost
1 John 5:16 If you see any brother or sister commit a sin that does not lead to death, you should pray and God will give them life.
Lamentations 3:26 it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD.
Psalm 103:8 The Lord is compassionate, merciful, patient, and always ready to forgive.
Jeremiah 29:11 I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord. They are plans for peace and not disaster, plans to give you a future filled with hope.
Luke 1:37 For with God nothing shall be impossible.
The Bible tells us that God doesn’t want anyone to perish. He wants us all to turn away from our sins and be saved (2 Peter 3:9). We must pray and ask for Him to save our loved ones from Satan’s strongholds. 2 Corinthians 4:4 tells us that Satan has blinded the minds of the lost; so we need to pray for God to open the mind of our loved one.
1 Timothy2:1 I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people.
Unsaved people don’t think they need prayer or salvation because they are blind to their need of a savior. The Bible says that they think that the gospel is foolishness (1 Corinthians 1:18) so it does no good to even argue about it with an unbeliever. Satan has put a veil over the minds of the lost, so the first thing to do is to pray for God to remove the veil (1 Corinthians 4:4).
Remember it’s the Holy Spirit that changes someone’s heart, not you or me.
I had to keep telling myself “don’t look at your circumstances, look at God”. You may think that your loved one is a lost cause, but remember Lazarus? Talk about a lost cause! He had been dead for several days and his sisters had given up hope that even Jesus could help, they told Him that Lazarus had been dead too long for Jesus to help him, but Jesus said “Lazarus come forth” and he did!
Look at all the people that Jesus healed of deadly diseases and demon possession in the Bible. Remember when Jesus was walking on water and Peter got out of the boat to walk with him? As soon as Peter started to doubt, he started sinking and then Jesus asked why did you doubt me? We must keep our faith in God. There have been plenty of people in our modern times that have been miraculously healed of deadly diseases that the doctors just couldn’t explain. So why is it so hard for us to believe that God can deliver our loved ones from sickness or disease or even drug addiction?
I love the old hymn Amazing Grace. The words are so true. Amazing grace, how sweet the sound that saved a wretch like me! I once was lost, but now am found, was blind, but now I see.
The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 2:14 that when we are lost, we are blind; blind to the gospel, blind to needing a savior, blind to God’s will. But the good news is that we don’t have to stay blind!
Isaiah 29:18 says that in that day the darkness of the blind shall see.
We should pray that our own eyes will be opened just like 2 Kings 6:17 Elisha prayed for his servant’s eyes to be opened to see all of the chariots of fire that God had sent to help them out of an impossible situation.
I think that Paul’s prayer for other believers, found in Ephesians 1:16-19, is a great prayer that we can use to pray for our lost loved ones to gain wisdom and understanding.
Ephesians 1:16 I do not cease to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers.
Ephesians 1:17 For I always pray to the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, that He may grant you a spirit of wisdom and revelation of insight into mysteries and secrets in the deep and intimate knowledge of Him.
Jude, who was the half brother of Jesus, gives us more good advice
Jude 1:22 Be merciful to those who doubt;
Jude 1:23 save others by snatching them from the fire; to others show mercy, mixed with fear.
Isaiah 40:11 Like a shepherd he takes care of his flock. He gathers the lambs in his arms. He carries them in his arms. He gently helps the sheep and their lambs.
God gave us all a free will to choose between right and wrong or good and evil. Although He won’t make us choose to be good, He can get our attention and help us to start choosing right and good instead of wrong and evil.
I know of a former drug addict that told me how God changed his circumstances for him. He was immediately delivered from his addiction when one night he overdosed on cocaine which literally caused his heart to stop beating. While he was in the ambulance he died, but was resuscitated and then he died again in the emergency room and again resuscitated; he died three times that night and each time he went to hell. It was a dark, hot, smelly, scary place where demons kept screaming while hitting him with a whip, he could feel tremendous pain with each lick, but it wasn’t drawing any blood. The demon just kept tormenting and beating him. He was only dead each time for about a minute, but while he was in hell, he said it seemed like forever. When he finally came back to life the third time he was screaming “don’t let me go back to sleep” and “somebody get me a preacher”. He knew that he couldn’t bear to go back to hell again and he was so afraid that he might die for good the next time, but mostly he needed to know how to be saved.
He did get saved and freed from drug addiction that night. God knows just how to get our attention; in this case it was pretty drastic, but He knows what it’s going to take to get your child’s attention too, so I urge you to get out of God’s way and let Him get to work on changing your child’s circumstances.
There’s a great story in 2 Kings 7 that tells us about the dire circumstances of an entire city that was starving to death because of a terrible famine in the land, which included four lepers that were sitting at the entrance to the city, because a leper wasn’t allowed inside the city. A leper was an outcast and basically good-for-nothing in the world’s eyes. One day they decided to do the unthinkable and convinced each other that they should go into the enemies’ camp and ask if they could have some food. They thought so what if they got killed at the hands of the enemy, since they were starving to death anyway, but when they got to the enemies camp, they found the place completely deserted of people, but fully stocked with enough food for their whole city, plus clothing, gold and livestock.
1 Corinthians 1:27 says that God loves to use the weak and foolish things of this world to shame and confound the strong and the wise.
In this case He used four good-for-nothing lepers, as far as the world was concerned, to go find enough food to save their entire city from starvation.
I took away two major points from this story:
1. If God can use a good-for-nothing leper to save a whole city, then He can surely use me or you to save our children from Satan’s destruction.
2. Those lepers would have starved to death if they hadn’t decided to do something outrageous instead of sitting around in self pity. We can’t just sit around feeling sorry for ourselves; we must do something outrageous to save our loved ones from eternal damnation; pray, fast and surrender them to God!
If we keep our trust in God and keep on praying (Luke 18:1) He will send help for our seemingly impossible situations.