“My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations” Isaiah 56:6,7; Mark 11:17
Many times we want to pray for Least Reached People groups and those working with them, however knowing what to pray for and how to pray can prevent us from doing so. The guide below has been collated to help you get started. It contains some basic principles extracted from WOI publication ‘Prayer for Missionaries’ as well as the Kairos 4th edition booklet: ‘Focusing Prayer on the Least Reached Peoples of the World’, to help you intercede effectively for those in cross-cultural ministry and for the extension of God’s kingdom.
HOW TO PRAY…
PRAY IN FAITH
John 11:40; Mark 9:23. Stand on God’s promises concerning the extension of God’s kingdom and those who are in service on the mission field. When we are convinced that mission is in accordance with the will of God, we can pray in faith and confidence that God will hear our prayers and powerfully answer them. Reading inspiring articles, books and testimonies, can also be helpful to build faith.
It helps to have up-to-date information and to be aware of current needs so that our prayers can be specific rather than general. Take time to read your missionary’s newsletters and to send them an email in reply. News from home is such an encouragement to those on the field. Take it as your responsibility to care for and support that individual or family. Only eternity will tell the worth and effectiveness of upholding God’s servants in this way (Philippians 1:7).
Daniel 10:12-13. Once you are aware of a prayer need or ‘project’, keep persisting until you receive news of a breakthrough. There is no distance in prayer and often much prayer is needed to overcome strongholds in particular situations.
PRAY IN THE SPIRIT
Romans 8:26-27. We should never underestimate the work of the Holy Spirit as we pray for the Least Reached Peoples of the world. Acts 6:4 says to ‘give ourselves to prayer continually’ and this is an exercise and spiritual discipline.
EXERCISE YOUR AUTHORITY OVER SATAN
Matt 18:18 In prayer we fight against unseen spiritual forces in the heavenly realm. Satan’s power and oppression in people’s lives and over many situations, needs binding so that they can come to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ and walk in that freedom. Pray for the veil to be removed. It is only God who can open blind eyes and soften hearts, to bring conviction of sin and create new life (2 Cor 4:4)
PRAY WITH FASTING
Acts 13:2; Mark 9:29 Fasting added to prayer is a very effective biblical principle for achieving a breakthrough. Corporate and group prayer and fasting is also very powerful.
PRAY WITH A RIGHT HEART ATTITUDE
Often we have held back from praying for various groups of Least Reached People groups because of our own prejudices and fears. We need to ask God to give us a heart filled with love and compassion for them.
PRAISE HIM FOR THE ANSWERS
2 Chron 20:22 If we thank God and give Him the praise due to His name for the answers yet to come, we exercise faith that is pleasing to Him.
PRAY BOTH INDIVIDUALLY AND CORPORATELY
Matt 6:6; 18:19,20. The Bible tells us to pray, both in private, as well as with others. It’s not either/or but both/and.
PRAY WITH THE GLOBAL NETWORKS OF PRAYER
We can join with millions of believers worldwide to pray for specific events, places and peoples. Resources and prayer calendars can be obtained for such initiatives as the Global Day of Prayer, Muslim Prayer Focus during Ramadan and others.
WHAT TO PRAY FOR…
PRAY FOR THE CHURCH
Christians must be obedient to take the Gospel and make disciples of all nations. Pray that Christians will get their priorities right: that they will focus time, resources and manpower on reaching the remaining Least Reached People groups.
PRAY FOR CROSS-CULTURAL WORKERS
Pray for those who are already working on the frontline:
- Family life. For blessing on marriages and also children growing up on the field facing unique challenges.
- Physical health. (Psalm 103:3; 107:20) It’s God’s will that we stay in good health to be most effective.
- Spiritual protection. (John 14:27; Psalm 31:24, 2 Corinthians 12:9). Culture shock, spiritual oppression and difficult circumstances can wear cross-cultural workers down. Pray that they may always know God’s peace, encouragement and strength in any situation and that they will know how to stand on God’s authority over Satan’s opposition.
- Love. Pray that workers will have supernatural love in their hearts for the people group that they are ministering to – not only towards the unreached but also amongst fellow team members.
- Courage and boldness. (Acts 4:29-30) Many missionaries face persecution and opposition. Pray that they will be wise but also fearless in their Christian witness.
- Establishment and reproduction of indigenous churches. It is the missionary’s job to introduce the Gospel and then then allow the momentum to become indigenous so that the initiative and drive of the movement comes from within the local Church and people group, rather than from outsiders.
- Revival and fruitful ministry. More is accomplished in a few weeks through revival, than is accomplished in years of ordinary work.God has promised to pour out His Spirit on all flesh (Joel 2:28-29). Pray that cross-cultural workers will depend totally on the Holy Spirit and walk in His empowerment.
PRAY FOR MORE WORKERS
Matt 9:37,38. Jesus has told us to pray for workers to go into fields of the world. It’s harvest time, but more workers are needed.
Thank you for praying! The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much (James 5:16).