Are you petitioning God on behalf of your husband? Are you remembering to do so? How many times do you go to bed and think just before dozing off, “I didn’t take the time to really pray today? But I’ll get up early tomorrow and have my quiet time with God.”
The next morning begins again with all sorts of things coming against you. And again you realize at night that you didn’t pray. That can go on for days, weeks, months or even years. It can easily become a habit. It’s something the enemy of our faith desires because you are right where the devil wants you. You are doing things under your strength and not the Lord’s.
“If Satan can’t get you to stop taking good care of your family altogether he’ll often help you put your foot more heavily on the accelerator so you’re racing through your day all the faster. You’ll be doing so many things that seem so necessary that you neglect that, which is most important. It is encompassing your husband and family in prayer.” (Cindy Wright)
When you do have your quiet time with the Lord to pray do you question whether prayer is really needed? And does God really answer prayer? Do you question whether your prayers make a difference? Does God really care if you take the time to ask him for things that He’s probably already poised to do anyway?
So why DO we pray? It’s simply because God DOES answer prayer and He DOES care about us. Solomon’s prayer to the Lord is written in the Bible in 1 King 8:28. It states, “Yet have regard to the prayer of your servant and his supplication, O Lord my God. It is to listen to the cry and to the prayer, which your servant prays before you today.“
In 1 Kings 9:3 we read: “And the Lord said to him, ‘I have heard your prayer and your supplication, which you have made before Me.“
In John 17, Jesus prays, “Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them.“
Jesus states in John 15:5, “I am the vine. You are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit. Apart from me you can do nothing.“
Intimacy Through Prayer
God desires intimacy with us, that we become one with Him. But this cannot be accomplished on our own. We must be willing to sacrifice our busyness and spend time with the King of Kings. We do this not only so that we can be strengthened, but also so that our husband and family will be strengthened also.
Many husbands do spend time with the Lord before they go off to work. But many do not. We need to intercede for them because “Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.“ (1 Peter 5:8)
We must “stand before God in the gap on their (our husband’s) behalf” (Ezekiel 22:30) so that our prayers and supplications will be answered by our Father in heaven.
The enemy is all around us in subtle ways. We see that in the television shows, which take up precious quality time between a husband and a wife. Movies, sports, sitcoms, reality shows, talk shows, news, anything and everything is available on television today. And this does not even mention how much is available on the Internet—just a “click” away at any moment. It’s a subtle way the enemy uses to separate us not only from each other, but also from time with the Lord.
Traps While Providing
Another obstacle, which the enemy has so conveniently worded as “providing for my family” —is the problem of working more than necessary. In today’s work world, there’s so much pressure in deciding how many hours is really necessary to work each week. Men, especially, can so easily be lured into this trap because they seem to almost be pre-disposed to draw their identity from what they do and who they are when they’re at work. So they take on extra hours. This is because they either feel pressure to do so from the organization they work for or from within themselves.
Is this necessary? Sometimes, perhaps, but more often than not, it’s the man wanting an escape from home. Or it may be he feels a need to get praise from others. Men today work in what can be referred to as a “war zone.” And frankly, these men don’t want to come home to another “war zone.” They’ve already spent 8-10 hours in the “trenches.” What they want and feel they need is a peaceful atmosphere to come home to.
Helping Our Husbands
How are we able to help our husbands? It’s not by nagging, criticizing or talking. It’s mostly by praying for them as they need us to. In 1 Kings 9:49 it states, “then from heaven, your dwelling place, hear their prayer and their plea, and uphold their cause.” We need to pray for our husbands as it says in 2 Chronicles 14:11.
“Then Asa (wives) called to the Lord his God and said, ‘Lord, there is no one like you to help the powerless against the mighty. Help us, O Lord our God. For we rely on You and in Your name we have come against this vast army. O Lord, You are our God. Do not let man prevail against You.'” Then verse 12 states, “The Lord struck down the Cushites before Asa and Judah.“
God heard their prayer and struck down the enemy. God answers prayer. And because of this we can boldly ask God to strike down the enemy in our husband’s lives also. Whether it’s asking God to defeat the enemy of non-belief, busyness, working too long and too hard, temptations at work, or anything else, we have the right and authority, as His children, because of Jesus Christ to “ask anything in His name and He will hear our prayers.” (John 16)
Stumbling Blocks and Giving Up
The enemy wants to use anything he can to be a stumbling block between God and man (and a man and his wife). He wants us to give up on prayer. He doesn’t like it that we can go directly to the Father in heaven through Jesus Christ to ask intercession for our husbands. As a prayer warrior in God’s army, we can ask God to remove those stumbling blocks placed before our husbands and us. We can ask God to help us to be conformed to God’s image.
We can pray from Bible verses for our husbands. Psalm 91:9-16 is a good example of asking God to protect us and our husbands (and children) from the enemy. It states:
“If you make the Most High your dwelling —even the Lord, who is my refuge —then no harm will befall you. No disaster will come near your tent. For He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways. They will lift you up in their hands so that you will not strike your foot against a stone. You will tread upon the lion and the cobra. You will trample the great lion and the serpent. ‘Because he loves me, says the Lord, I will rescue him. I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call upon me, and I will answer him. I will be with him in trouble and will deliver him and honor him with long life, and will I satisfy him and show him my salvation.‘”
Praying Using a Prayer Notebook
Prayer is so important. I sometimes think we forget how important it is. That is why I want to share with you how God has helped me with my prayer time.
In 1988, my husband and I took a Sunday School Class for adults. In this class, we were told how to pray for our spouses and families. The teacher said to get a 3-ring binder, notebook paper, and dividers. Use the dividers to write down the names of those you will be praying for. Then, put down your prayer requests as you pray for them. I have been praying for my family in this way ever since. I believe you, too, will be rewarded when you start praying with this type of prayer journal.
First, it is important to know some facts about prayer before we continue speaking on the prayer journal.
Petitioning God in Prayer
• Prayer is simply conversation with God —the interaction of the soul with God. It is not just in contemplation or meditation, but in direct address to Him.
• Prayer may be oral or mental, occasional or constant, tossed up as an arrow prayer or formal. It is “beseeching the Lord” (Exodus 32:11); “pouring out the soul before the Lord.“ (1 Samuel 1:15) It is “praying and crying to heaven.“ (2 Chronicles 32:20) Prayer is a way of “seeking unto God and making supplication.” (Job 8:5) It is “drawing near to God“ (Psalm 73:28) and “bowing the knees“ (Ephesians 3:14).
• Prayer accepts the belief in the personality of God. By it we accept His ability and willingness to hold interaction with us. We accept His personal control of all things and all His creatures and their actions.
• Our prayer must be sincere. It is to be offered with reverence with a humble sense of our own insignificance and our own unworthiness as sinners.
• We must come to him in total submission to His divine will.
• Prayer must also be offered in the faith that God hears our prayers and answers them according to His will. We shouldn’t pray that our husband changes, rather that God give us grace, peace of mind and to help our attitude to change. In other words, again conform us to Your image, Lord.
Using a Prayer Journal
This prayer journal will have significant influence on you and your husband and your marriage. It is a legacy for him and for your children. You can show your husband the prayer requests that God had put on your heart as well as answered prayers. You can also have a time of sharing the Bible verses that God revealed to you.
The most important thing to remember is that you are not trying to change your husband into whom YOU’D like him to be, rather you’re lifting him up to our heavenly Father. You’re asking Him to reveal to you what God wants you to pray. It is important to pray God’s will, as He knows what the future holds, we do not.
Remember, God is omniscient — all knowing. Matthew 6:8 says, “Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him” and my favorite is Psalm 139:1-4 where David acknowledges God is all knowing. He says, “O Lord, You have searched me and You know me. You know when I sit and when I rise, and perceive my thoughts from afar. You discern my going out and my lying down, and You are familiar with all my ways. Before a word is on my tongue you know it completely, O Lord. God is AWESOME.“
These Bible Truths are important for us in our prayer journaling:
• THE PLACE FOR PRAYER — “EVERYWHERE.”
1 Timothy 2:8 says, “I want men everywhere to lift up holy hands in prayer, without anger or disputing.” It is written in Jonah 2:1: “From inside the fish Jonah prayed to the Lord his God.“
• THE TIME FOR PRAYER— “ALWAYS.”
Luke 18:1 says, “Then Jesus told His disciples a parable to show them that they should always pray and not give up.” Verse 7 says, “And will not God bring about justice for his chosen ones, who cry out to him day and night?“
• SUBJECTS FOR PRAYER — “EVERYTHING.”
Ephesians 6:18 says, “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests.“
• ANSWERS TO PRAYER — “ALL THINGS.”
We’re told in 1 Chronicles 5:20: “They were helped in fighting them. And God handed the Hagrites and all their allies over to them because they cried out to Him during the battle. He answered their prayers, because they trusted Him.” Jonah 2:2 says, “In my distress I called to the Lord and He answered me. From the depths of the grave I called for help, and You listened to my cry.“
As I stated previously our prayers should be specific. Moses had specific prayers. Joshua did; Ruth asked the Lord to glean and gather among the sheaves (Ruth 2:7). Samuel, Elisha and Elijah, David, and throughout the Old and New Testaments we see specific prayers to the Lord.
Make it a point to be alone with God while praying in this manner. Jesus went out to be alone. Moses was alone; and there are more examples in the Bible. We need to try to get away from distractions.
WHEN YOU’RE ALONE AND CAN SPEND TIME WITH HIM PRAY THE FOLLOWING WAY: A.C.T.S. Adore, Confess, Thanksgiving, Supplication. This has helped me to stay focused on God —to honor Him, to be clean before Him; to thank Him for His faithfulness and to request my supplications to Him.
PRAYING THE ACTS WAY:
Adore and praise God, not only for answered prayer, but also for who He is. You can use Bible verses to praise His name. Nehemiah 9:5-7 says, “Blessed be Your glorious name. May it be exalted above all blessing and praise. For You alone are the Lord. You made the heavens, even the highest heavens, and all their starry host, the earth and all that is in them. You give life to everything and the multitudes of heaven worship you.“
Confess your sins before Him. Timothy 2:8 says, “So I want men everywhere to pray with holy hands lifted up to God, free from sin and anger and resentment.“ Psalm 32:6 says, “Now I say that each believer should confess his sins to God when he is aware of them, while there is time to be forgiven.“ 2 Chronicles 7:14-15 says, “If my people, who are called by My name will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and will heal their land. Now My eyes will be open and My ears attentive to the prayers offered in this place.“
Thank Him for all he has done for you. Be specific. Psalm 95:2 says, “Let us come before Him with thanksgiving.“ It also says in Ephesians chapter 1, “I have never stopped thanking God for you. I pray for your constantly, asking God, the glorious Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, to give you wisdom to see clearly and really understand who Christ is and all that He has done for you. I pray that your hearts will be flooded with light so that you can see something of the future He has called you to share. This is for you to realize that God has been made rich because of we who are Christ’s have been given to him. I pray that you will begin to understand how incredibly great His power is to help those who believe Him.“
Pray to Him —let Him know your requests. Philippians 4:6 says, “Do not be anxious for anything. But in everything by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.“ 1 Timothy 2:2 says, “I urge, then, first of all, that requests, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for every one…“
Try to find a specific place and time to pray when you use your prayer notebook. I pray on Monday mornings every week. Sometimes more, but I pray for my husband daily no matter what. Psalm 5:3 says, “Each morning I will look to you in heaven and lay my requests before you, praying earnestly.“
This is the only thing in my life where I have been disciplined. I’m not a very disciplined person. (Just ask my husband.) I usually just “go with the flow.” But God has shown me how important this prayer notebook is. I’m now on my second prayer notebook and should start a third soon. I also use the same Bible when I pray. This is so I can write answers to prayer or Bible verses God has shown me to pray.
Then I cross-reference it to my prayer notebook. Your prayer time can take as long or as short as you want. It’s your time alone with the Lord. Listen to the Spirit and be obedient to Him. If for a season you can only spend 10 minutes with the Lord then start with that. God will show you if he wants you to spend more time with Him.
This prayer journal is your legacy to your husband and children. God instilled on my heart how important this is to our family. He had me give these notebooks to my family the Christmas of 2002. I made them into books for each person in my family. My husband’s book was 50 pages of prayer requests, answered prayer and Bible verses. I added pictures with his favorite scripture verses. Then I had it bound.
Prayer Journal for Children
I did the same for our 3 children. It was made the same way as my husband using pictures and Bible verses they liked. This is an irreplaceable treasure for our loved ones. It is a treasure especially for our husbands. It tells them how much we love them. We’re all busy. Yet when we take the time to be alone with the Lord, we’re so greatly rewarded, as are those whom we’re praying for.
In looking back over the years of my prayer journaling, I’ve found so many answers to prayer. Some were to my liking and some were not, but I know God, who is faithful, answered the according to His will. Through our quiet times, as we pray to God and draw closer to Him, we also learn to trust Him completely with everything. God does indeed answer our prayers. He is concerned with our everyday lives. He loves us unconditionally and forever.
I pray you will live according to Colossians 4:2 which states: “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful.“
Leslie Miller has been married to Phillip Miller for over 45 years. Over the span of many years Leslie has been involved in teaching at various educational institutions as well as churches and has also been a counselor with a Crisis Pregnancy Center. She and her husband have even being foster parents to several different children. They now live in Tucson, Arizona. They have 3 grown children and two grandchildren.
— ALSO —
The following are links to additional articles which contain ideas and prayers you can pray for your husband:
If you have additional tips you can share to help others, please “Join the Discussion” by adding your comments below.