Prayer For Spiritual Leaders

Spiritual Disciplines Sermon: Prayer (Colossians 4)

Prayer For Spiritual Leaders

And every time we see Jesus praying He was praying with passion.

In Luke 3:1 at His Baptism – while He was praying the heaven was opened. Passionate prayer opens Heaven.

In Luke 6:12 before He called His disciples – He spent the whole night in prayer. Passionate prayer opens the windows of heaven and shines God's light of direction on our path.

In Luke 9:29 at His transfiguration – And while He was praying, the appearance of His face became different, and His clothing became white and gleaming. Passionate prayer ushers us into the throne room of heaven and enables us to experience the glory of the Father.

In John 17 He prayed for all of those who would follow Him, that we would be kept from the evil one and that we would be sanctified by the truth, which is His word. Passionate prayer expresses the deepest desires of our hearts and reveals our love for others.

In Luke 22:44, where Jesus is praying through the night in the garden of Gethsemane, the bible says,” And being in agony, He was praying very fervently; and His sweat became drops of blood, falling down upon the ground.” Passionate prayer enables us to be totally honest with God, even in the midst of the most trying circumstances.

In Luke 23:24 as He hung on the cross. Passionate prayer is a portal to God's power. It strengthens us internally and is often a conduit for God's grace upon us.

Jesus always prayed with passion, because He knew Who it was He was talking to and He knew that access to the Father is a powerful thing and not something to take lightly.

Prayer from the heart, that's what passionate prayer is, it is prayer from the heart not just from the head. Think about the last time you were passionate about something. We should never lose the passion when we talk to God. Jesus was always passionate when He prayed and that's how He wants us to pray.

In fact, He taught us to pray this way, not only through His example, but specifically through His teaching In Matthew 6:7, in the Sermon on the Mount as Jesus instructs on prayer, He gives us what has become known as the Lord's Prayer. But just before the Lord's prayer what does He say?

“When you pray, do not use meaningless repetition as the Gentiles do.”

(Jews around the world may now send prayers via fax to the Western Wall)

What has happened to the Lord's Prayer? People repeat it as if it were some kind of magic mantra that will bless them or move God to hear them.

They are doing with it is exactly what He was instructing us not to do with it.

The gentiles, when they prayed tried, through their religious repetitions, with their chants and their mantras to call forth or impress their Gods. That is not what you do when you are in a relationship.

James 5:16 says, “The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.”

If we are going to be disciples of Jesus Christ, to take up our cross and follow Him, it will require us to be passionate in our prayer life. But not only must we pray persistently and passionately, we must pray gratefully. Look at the last part of verse 2.

III. Pray gratefully – pray with thanksgiving

A constant theme which should run through our prayers is that of gratitude. Paul never fails to mention it.

  • Ephesians 5:20 tells us that thanksgiving is the natural result of being filled with and walking under the influence of the Holy Spirit.
  • Philippians 4:6 tells us to be anxious for nothing but in everything we should pray, giving thanks as we make our petitions known to God.
  • First Thessalonians 5:18 tells us that giving thanks at all times is God's will for us in Christ Jesus.
  • Colossians 3:17 says that as believers everything we say or do should be done in the name of the Lord Jesus as we give thanks to Him.
  • First Timothy 4:4  says that food and marriage are good things given to us by God and are to be received with thanksgiving and gratitude.

Expressing gratitude as we pray accomplishes several things:

a. It articulates dependence – It says you know who God is, you know who you are and you are aware, at least to some degree, of how desperate you would be were it not for His providence and presence in your life.

When we pray it should always express our understanding that every breath we take is, in fact, a gift from God. Failure to pray with gratitude demonstrates a sense of self-reliance and self sufficiency that is insulting to God. Which brings me to my second observation here about the expression of gratitude, not only does it articulate dependence

b. It generates humility – expressing gratitude continues to remind us of how truly helpless we are without God.

Everything in this world, our flesh, the world system, the people around us, all try and reinforce the idea of a self-made man. But everything in God's word speaks to the contrary. Micah 6:8 says, “He has told you, oh man, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, to love kindness and to walk humbly with your God.”

c. Expressing Gratitude demonstrates relationship – It says we know that He is our Father and that we are His children and as His children we know He loves us and has provided for us that love.

Folks, there are few things as disappointing or heart breaking as an ungrateful child. When we fail to express gratitude we are taking God for granted and assuming that we somehow deserve His grace and His kindness. Nothing could be further from the truth.

We are blessed because Jesus has made it possible, through His death, burial and resurrection, for us to be adopted into the family of God.

The benefits we enjoy are the benefits of relationship, and when we express our gratitude it demonstrates the reality of that relationship.

When we pray with persistence and with passion, it enables us to express the depth of our gratitude to God who loves us so much, and so desires to be in fellowship with us that He sent Jesus Christ, His only begotten Son, to die on a cross so that we could have forgiveness of sins and fellowship with God. What greater thing is there than this? And is this not sufficient reason to give thanks as we pray?

Pray with gratitude. But there's more. Look at verse 3 where we are instructed to

IV. Pray selflessly – we must pray for others

Intercessory prayer is basically praying for others, it is praying for God's will to be done in the lives of other people.

Not only is there far too little prayer being offered these days, but much of what is offered is purely selfish. Lord give me this, Lord give me that; do this for me; do that for me.

Read the prayers of Jesus and you find that a large majority of His prayer life was devoted to praying for others.

Intercessory prayers characterized the prayer life of Jesus.

  • Isaiah 53:12 says, “He Himself bore the sins of many, and interceded for the transgressors.”
  • Luke 22:23 Jesus tells Peter, “I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail.”
  • Luke 23:34 on the cross, Jesus was praying for others when He said, “Father forgive them for they do not know what they are doing.”
  • John 14:15 Jesus interceded for us, asking the Father to send the Holy Spirit
  • John 17:19 He prayed for us, the church, in His High Priestly prayer. Listen to the intercessory nature of this prayer, “I ask on their behalf; I do not ask on behalf of the world, but of those whom Thou has given Me.”
  • Romans 8:34 tells us that Jesus is seated at the right hand of the Father, making intercession for us.
  • And Hebrews 7:25 says, “Hence, also, He is able to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.”

Jesus prayed intercessory prayers, He was ever praying for others.

Understanding the power of Prayer, Paul wanted to be sure the Colossian Christians understood what it was they were to pray for. He wanted them to pray with a specific purpose. He wanted them to pray for him, asking God to open a door so that they could speak the gospel.

It was the gospel that Paul lived for; it was the preaching of the gospel that had landed Paul in prison; it was the preaching of the gospel that was ever on the forefront of Paul's mind. You see, Paul was about following the great commission.

He was about making disciples of all nations.

One of the most misunderstood realities of discipleship, which is the goal of spiritual discipline, is that it is never a purely selfish thing.

God's purpose in making us more Jesus is not an end unto itself, it is always purposeful, He wants to conform you to the image of Jesus so that you can continue on with the work of Jesus. In John 20:21 Jesus says, “As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.

” Our purpose in spiritual growth is not merely to enjoy the personal benefits of fellowship with God, though this is certainly a glorious benefit.

It is ultimately to become more useful in the kingdom and to carry out the great commission of making disciples of all nations and of embodying the great command which is to love the Lord our God with all that we are and to love our neighbors as ourselves. This finds its ultimate expression when we help others come into a personal relationship with Jesus.

Note that Paul is not asking them to pray for his legal situation or that he would be released from prison. He is asking them to pray that he will have the opportunity to lead someone to Christ. He is focused on the Kingdom of God; on helping them become the Christians they need to become so that God can use them to accomplish the things they need to accomplish.

Paul was always concerned with doing the will of God.

How many of our prayers are directed at the expansion of His eternal kingdom rather than the expansion of our petty kingdoms? If you were able to chronicle your prayers, knowing how much time you spent praying for different things, how much of your time would be spent praying for your family, for their health, for the health and well being of your loved ones, compared to how much time you were praying for the lost who are headed to hell?

We are called to pray for others.

There are three things I would say to you this morning about your prayer life, three things you need to examine as you pray:

1. Examine your heart attitude – because prayer is fellowship with God and is a direct reflection of our relationship with Him, it always involves our heart attitude. If you are in love with Him, your prayer life will reflect that love. Prayer begins in our hearts. It is an outpouring of our heart towards God and always reveals the truth about how we feel towards Him.

2. Measure your words – Prayer begins in our hearts but makes its way to our lips. This is what the psalmist means in Psalm 19 when he says, “may the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in thy sight…” God hears what we say. Be careful what you say because God is always listening and holds us accountable for every idle word, especially words spoken in prayer.


Release your life – How can you expect God to take you seriously if you are not at least willing to participate in God's answer to your prayer? Can you seriously pray for lost people to come to Christ if you are not willing to share with them? Can you honestly pray for God to meet the material needs of another if you are not willing to contribute some of what God has entrusted to you? You see if we are going to be effective in our prayer life, we must first be sold out and willing to take action when God responds. Your involvement may be part of His answer to your prayer.

What does your prayer life look this morning? Are you persistent in prayer? Are your prayers passionate or are they perfunctory? Are they filled with intensity and fervor or are they weak, timid and lacking faith? What about gratitude? How much time have you spent thanking God for all He has done for you? And who are you praying for? Is there anyone in your life that you are praying will get saved? Is there a burden on your heart to see God's kingdom expand, to see His will done?

What would happen in your life if you really began to pray? If you became a disciplined prayer warrior? If, instead of doing some of the things you are in the habit of doing which have no eternal consequence, you were to dedicate that time to prayer? What would happen in your family if you began to pray for them more, what would happen here at your church if you prayed for God to move in our midst? What would happen in your heart if you prayed regularly that God would search you and know your heart and cleanse you from any attitude or action which was keeping you from being more Jesus? What's keeping you from prayer and is it really worth it?

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54 Powerful Prayer for Pastors and Church Leaders Points

Prayer For Spiritual Leaders

Home Intercession 54 Powerful Prayer for Pastors and Church Leaders Points

Having been involved in ministry for a while now, I know just how stressful shepherding people can be. This is especially true for those who are truly sold out to the cause. A study carried out by Duke Divinity School revealed that the rate of depression among pastors is about double of that of everyone else.

The rate was slightly lower for pastors who were interviewed in person. One could accredit this to the pastors not wanting to burden others with their burdens. This is the way that our pastors are trained in general.  //

As the body of Christ, we are called to hold each other up. The ones we often turn to and depend on need to know that at the very minimum they can depend on us to lift them up in prayer. Some of the greatest scandals that have rocked the church have been a result of mishaps and misfortunes of leaders.

These people are no deities; they are just as humane as any one of us. Expectations are higher for them, and so are some of the temptations and scrutiny that they face daily. Above that, they also carry additional problem that their flocks are facing at any given time. This is not easy, by any stretch of the imagination.

Matthew 26:31

Then Jesus told them, “This very night you will all fall away on account of me, for it is written: “‘I will strike the shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.’

The scripture above illustrates the key issue here. The enemy’s strategy will always be to target the ones who are in leadership positions. Jesus himself recognised this, as was said in Zechariah 13:7. Our prayers should stand guard over our shepherds. This is what these prayer points are about. As we stand guard over the men and women of God, the Lord will cover all of us.

Beyond the pastors, there are various leaders in ministries. These may be standing in official positions or simply functioning in said capacity. We want to lift these servants up to the Lord as well. Every individual who gives their time and effort to the work of the Lord within the church.

Father keep our shepherds in the right place, may we not be scattered. Uphold and uplift their being, their standing and their voice. May they always stand in and rely on you! Guide and keep us oh Lord! We pray over every person that will raise their voice to you on behalf of their pastors and leaders. Bless and keep them oh Lord. In Jesus’ name. Amen

Day to Day Ministry

2 Tim 4:2 Preach the word; be prepared in season and season; correct, rebuke and encourage—with great patience and careful instruction.

  1. We want to pray that our pastors would be empower by the Holy Spirit in the preaching of the word.
  2. Give them boldness oh Lord, to speak matters of your heart and not to seek to please man.
  3. Give our pastors boldness to stand as corrector to the flock. In these times where wickedness goes unchecked in the church. Let our pastors arise.
  4. Grant our pastors and leaders grace to be encouragers of the body of Christ. Give them wisdom to know what to say!
  5. May their walk in Christ be filled with patience. May their footsteps bring peace and joy!
  6. May their walk be blameless before you! Raise them to truly be men and women after your own heart.

Keeping Watch

Acts 20:28 Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with his own blood.

  1. Father we thank you for the gift of stewardship. We thank you for the flocks that you have given pastors to watch over. Grant them grace to lead as you would.
  2. May the value of the flock be never diminished in their eyes. May they always remember the price that you paid for every single person under their care.
  3. Grant our leaders grace to remain watchful over themselves, that they may not stray from your will, oh Lord!

50+ Powerful Biblical Prayer Points for Healing for the sick


Hebrews 13:17 Have confidence in your leaders and submit to their authority, because they keep watch over you as those who must give an account. Do this so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no benefit to you.

  1. Lord we come against the blinding spirit of pride and arrogance in our church leaders. May they remain coachable.
  2. Lord we pray for the body of Christ. Grant us grace to submit to authority of the office that our leaders stand under. Give us wisdom to respect the anointing you have placed on these men and women.
  3. May our ministries not be a burden for the leaders. Let them be a great source of strength and of joy.

To whom much is given

James 3:1 Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.

  1. Father we thank you for the sacrifice that leadership is. The pray for our leaders today. We pray for preservation for them and for their families.

New pastors and leaders

Jeremiah 3:15 Then I will give you shepherds after my own heart, who will lead you with knowledge and understanding.

  1. Father in these selfish times, raise selfless shepherds for your people!
  2. Lord reveal your heart to your people. Raise pastors after your own heart.
  3. We come against the spirit of arrogance and self-centred aspiration.
  4. Father remove the spirit of greed that is eating at the heart of our churches today. May our churches be known for being your hand in our communities.
  5. We pray that you would pull down those who have strayed away from your will, and seeking to profit off the gospel.

Servant Hearted Leadership

1 Peter 5:1-4 To the elders among you, I appeal as a fellow elder and a witness of Christ’s sufferings who also will share in the glory to be revealed:

2 Be shepherds of God’s flock that is under your care, watching over them—not because you must, but because you are willing, as God wants you to be; not pursuing dishonest gain, but eager to serve;

3 not lording it over those entrusted to you, but being examples to the flock.

4 And when the Chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the crown of glory that will never fade away.

  1. Father we pray that our pastors, deacons, elders and all others serving in ministry would never forget the honour that it is to be able to serve your people.
  2. Raise leaders who are more keen to wash others’ feet than to have their own feet washed.
  3. May your gospel not be tainted by greed, oh Lord.
  4. Father, may our leaders be exemplary in all that they do.
  5. As church leaders, Lord we pray that we always remember that we are stewards of all that is in our hands. Grant us grace to multiply and not to hoard for ourselves.

Strength and Perseverance

Isaiah 40:31 but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

  1. Father we pray for all pastors going through tough periods. Renew their strength.
  2. May they never forget that they can lean on you. Grant them humility and wisdom to know when they are weary and in need of rest. More than anything, grant them wisdom to seek you in these times.
  3. We pray that you would raise a solid support system for our leaders. We come against the spirit of loneliness, in Jesus’ name.
  4. We declare that our pastors will hope in you, oh Lord. They will soar eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

Prayer Points for Pastors: Unshakable leadership

1 Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

  1. Father we thank you for the families of church leaders. We thank your for the sacrifices that they also have to make. There is a cost to them as well, as their loved ones serve. Bless them oh Lord!
  2. We pray for leaders who have sown seed but are yet to see fruit. Give them wisdom to know to wait on you.
  3. Father let none of our service, as leaders be half-hearted. May we always be fully committed to all we do for you and through you!
  4. We come against the spirit of envy, and denominationalism. Grant us grace to walk in one accord, in Christ.

Do not be weary

Galatian 6:9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

  1. Father we call upon a harvest for every seed sown in evangelism. Wherever the gospel has been shared, let it begin to take root.
  2. We pray for consistency and persistence in doing your will.
  3. May your good works never run short of doers, oh Lord. I refuse that the rocks would cry out while I live!!

Philippians 4:19 And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.

  1. Lord we pray for sustenance and provision for our leaders. May they not be plagued by lack while they serve.
  2. We pray that their needs would not become gluttonous.
  3. May their hearts not be filled with worldly desires of gathering possessions and wealth for themselves.

Prayer Points for pastors and church leaders: Do not muzzle

1 Timothy 5:18 For Scripture says, “Do not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain,” and “The worker deserves his wages.”

  1. Lord raise us to always be uplifters of leadership.
  2. May our leaders never have to carry burdens alone.
  3. Grant us grace to be their providers as they provide for us spiritually.
  4. May our leaders be known to be yours even by how they spend their resources. Your word says that where our treasure is, is where our heart is. May their hearts be in you always.

The ministry of prayer

Acts 6:2 “But we will devote ourselves to prayer and to the ministry of the word.”

  1. Lord we banish the spirit of prayerlessness among our leaders. May they be men and women of prayer, more than they are doers.
  2. Let their actions be birthed in the prayer closet.
  3. We pray for our church prayer meetings to be uplifted.
  4. Let our church prayer meetings become incubators of your glory.
  5. We pray for overflow in the miraculous. Overflow in healing, in testimonies from time vested in prayer.
  6. Our prayer closets will never be neglected.
  7. Lord may your eternal word be shared relentless among us.
  8. Bring unity and harmony beyond our religious and denominational divides.
  9. Bring a prayer revival into our homes, into our workplaces, into our schools and more than ever, into our churches. In Jesus’ name.

We want to take this time to thank you for taking time to pray with us. Let us keep our churches and leaders uplifted through prayer. I remember reading how high the rates of suicide were among pastors. God forbid that this would become acceptable under our watch.

We are stewards even of our words, of our prayers. Let us not be the steward that buried his talent. May your mouth bring forth great things in your sphere, through Christ Jesus! Thanks for using these prayer points for pastors and church leaders.

These prayer points and more can be found on

Originally posted 2018-03-08 00:58:43.

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