I know there is a whole series of books based on the power of prayer: The Power of a Praying Wife, …Praying Husband, …Praying Son, …Praying Daughter, Praying ______________ (fill in the blank with another relative). Honestly, I’ve never read any of them. I have nothing against them besides lots of other books to compete for my attention. However, the concept is right on.
The other night Jenn and I got to talking about prayer and we both agreed that we don’t pray enough together. We spend time each day praying by ourselves, but not enough together. So, we decided to change that. She told me to tell her when we would pray and she’d make sure to be up and ready to pray with me. Her exact words were, “You crack the whip and I’ll obey.” Trust me, there was no whip cracking involved in our prayer. I told her we’d pray on Mondays and Thursdays at 7am before I leave for work at 7:40. The house is quiet (for the most part) and our prayers can be uninterrupted (for the most part).
When it comes to making time to pray, sometimes you do have to crack the whip – personally and as a couple – to make sure it happens. The word that comes to mind is “intentional.” MAKE SURE that you make time to pray by yourself AND together – be intentional about it. If you wait around until you have the time, you’ll never have the time. You can always fill your time with a bunch of other less meaningful things than prayer. Praying takes discipline.
One benefit is the time spent together, of course, but prayer also says a lot about a person. The things your spouse prays for are often the things that are the heaviest on their heart. Listen to your spouse pray and join them in prayer for those things.
Now I know that since I live in a military town, many of your aren’t with your spouse right now. I would encourage you, even when apart, to stay in prayer contact. It’s simple – by email, phone, Skype, Instant Messenger, or however you talk, spend a minute (or a few if you can) in prayer with each other. If you don’t have that kind of time on the phone, ask how you each can be praying for each other, then make sure to do it. Also make sure to follow up with those prayers – ask them how those issues are going and how God has been providing.
This was the foundation of my relationship with Jenn and one way that God showed me that she was the one for me – our times of prayer together. We prayed before we went out on a date and we got together at least once a week to just talk about our spiritual lives and where we were with the Lord. That was huge. If it was important then, it’s more important now!
Set that time aside – block it out on your calendar, put a reminder on your phone, set your alarm clock – do whatever it takes to make it happen! Crack the whip! It’s that important.