Praying students toward God

There’s a student in our church we really admire. His family is broken, he’s known agony, and he still points toward God.

Yesterday he told us his prayer life isn’t where he wants it, but he’s trying. “I’m not a close companion with God, but I respect Him from a distance and I want to do better.”

We think highly of this young man and will pray for him daily. So here’s the question — if you were in our shoes, how would you pray for him? What would you say?

Here’s what we’re thinking.

First, talk it through with God. “Here’s this boy who wants You. Despite suffering and a rough peer group, he wants to love you and follow Jesus and learn to share his faith. He actually wants to be a pastor some day . . .”

Next, ask for the things we’re encouraged to ask for. “Keep him from temptation, deliver him from evil. May Your will be done in his life. Give him what he needs today to grow in love with You.”

Finally, I’ll borrow from Paul’s prayers for the people in those early churches. Passages like Ephesians 3:14-19, Colossians 1:9-14, and others.

Then, I’ll sit there for a minute to see what else, if anything, God’s Spirit brings to mind.

This is shepherding. It’s what we do when we love students. Prayer is the work, and ministry is the fruit.