Praying for Connection

We’re praying and fasting this Monday during “lunch” time for: 1)  God-honoring and healthy marriages, 2) courage for men to be who God has created them to be, and 3) courage for women to be willing to see where we need to change (and then change).  Drop the donut, grab a friend, and set aside some time to pray!  And as you do, you might consider….

In the last few months, lots has been written and revealed about marriage.  I’m thinking of the Pew/Time magazine report which said 4 out of 10 Americans see marriage as obsolete; or this week’s Wall Street Journal article Where Have the Good Men Gone? about women outpacing men in education & employment prospects–and the related effects on marriage; or the latest policy discussion about civil unions, etc.  It seems to be the talk of the town everywhere I go.  Honestly, I wish it weren’t a topic I had to think about.  But I’m so single, and it’s so there!  There’s just no escaping it.

So, I want to propose a different take on the whole question of men, women, and marriage: maybe all the relational chaos–and the un-marriage between men and women that is cascading around–is at core simply a living metaphor for our culture’s spiritual chaos.  If marriage is somehow a symbolic pointer to the bigger picture of Jesus and his bride (Eph. 5:32), then perhaps all the un-marriage (a made up word, I know) simply points to our culture’s increasing disconnection with Jesus.  It’s also symbol, too, but inverted?

Now please do NOT hear me saying that you or your best girlfriend are single because you are disconnected to Jesus; it’s not true for me, and I can’t imagine that it’s true for you.  Rather, I’m talking here about cultural trends.  Our culture as a whole seems to be increasingly disconnecting from Jesus, and I can’t help but think that in many ways, we are all living with the relational fallout of that reality.

So this week, as you pray, definitely pray for specific men, specific relationships, specific longings.  Process with your girlfriends, confess your sin, pour out your heart, ask for more of Jesus’ loving Presence, and definitely take the time to celebrate the sweetness, fun, dates, transformation or general good that you are experiencing.  But also, at the risk of sounding like a sweaty, pleading tent preacher from the 1930s:  pray for revival.  Seriously, please pray for the people in your life who are yet to intimately know God as revealed in Jesus and experienced through his Spirit.  Pray that the relational break between so many people and God could healed.  And lastly, because I honestly believe this serves men & women alike:  put in a little extra prayer muscle on behalf of the single guys out there.  For, when they have bent their knee to the King, it makes them far more able to stand upright with a woman.  And honestly, I think most of us are longing for more of those men.

Many Blessings on your Week,


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10 Responses to Praying for Connection

  1. Stefanie says:

    Love this line – “For, when they have bent their knee to the King, it makes them far more able to stand upright with a woman. And honestly, I think most of us are longing for more of those men.”
    I know that’s the kind of man I want! Thanks for sharing.

  2. jaellebe says:

    Thanks a lot Connally! I guess I never thought of the Bible giving us specific instruction on how to pray for men. And I’m happy to hear that we’re praying for men in our circles, not “the men we want.” I was a little taken aback by that idea. It almost seemed like the idea was to “pray for a man,” which I’ve always interpreted as praying your own will over someone’s life. I can’t wait to catch up on your posts, as I just discovered your blog yesterday.

    In Christ,

  3. jaellebe says:

    When you say pray for “specific men” what do you mean? Are you suggesting we pray for a particular man, or that we pray for specific attributes of a man? Additionally, (and you may have covered this) are there any passages that detail the Godly qualities we should pray for in a husband? Men have Proverbs 31.

    • fast. pray. says:

      when we suggest praying for ‘specific men’ we are suggesting naming men by name–not just a ‘man i want’ but any of the men in your spheres of connection–the guys from work or church or college or growing up or wherever. name them by name before the Lord.

      and in terms of how best to pray for men, two thoughts come to mind:
      1) have you ever read the first part of proverbs 31? it includes the sayings of a king that emerged from his mom’s wisdom. men need to watch out for ‘spending their strength on a woman.’ if you read additional translations, you get the idea it’s really a command to be wise about which women men invest their lives in–i.e. not fortune-hunting women, not seductive women, not imaginary women (porn), etc. so, the first request would be: “help man X to see what’s good in a woman and pursue it.” the next part includes words about kings and leaders not getting drunk and doing injustice/over-looking the underdog as a result. i think this means we have to pray for men to not escape pain/responsibility with not just drunkenness, but with anything that would turn their attention away from caring for others–too much, even of a good thing, is a problem. so pray against addiction to anything (substances, porn, video games, even work or athletic endeavors). and then lastly, the proverb talks about speaking up for those who can’t speak up for themselves. pray that man X would have the courage to fight FOR what is good and true and just, wherever he finds himself. when men bring their strength to bear for those with less strength, amazing things can happen.
      so in short: pray for 1) a proper channeling of his sexual desire, 2) a willingness to face reality/not escape into any idols/addictions, and 3) a willingness to fight for what is just and right.

      2) the other thing that comes to mind is paula’s book–in the back, she has an appendix for how to pray for men. it’s not rocket science, but it’s really helpful.

      hope some of this helps–

  4. Arianne says:

    What an encouraging word and call to be the change (insread of complaining and moping…which I do all too often). Thank you So much for sharing. Moving forward :-).

  5. Good work/words, Con, and thank you for the interesting and informative links. I liked the TIMES quote: “Marriage is like glue, says Eisenberg. You can build something with it. Living together is like Velcro. “The commitment of marriage gives people the opportunity to grow and thrive in ways that other relationships do not,” he says.” Here’s to more GLUE for this country.

  6. Pingback: Fast and Pray « Chronicles of Natalie

  7. Lois Westerlund says:

    Well said, Connally, very well said! Reflects the Biblical looking at the root that produces the fruit!

  8. Thank you so much for this encouraging idea. I was praying each week for spouses for myself and friends, but love that you have focused on something bigger – prayer for a generation of men and women. I also have followed your initiative and started fasting during my Monday lunch break to pray for these men and women. I am journaling from these prayers so that I can actually see God’s work — how easy it is for us to forget how he blesses and moves, now I have documented proof!

    I recently started a singles blog and discuss some of the same ideas. I am hoping to start a community of women encouraging and praying for eachother and am eventually hoping to not be the only author. new to this whole blog thing, but wanted to share my website in case anyone wanted to check it out.

  9. Will pray for …..”a little extra prayer muscle on behalf of the single guys out there. For, when they have bent their knee to the King, it makes them far more able to stand upright with a woman. And honestly, I think most of us are longing for more of those men.”……..yup so very true and yes we are longing for this kind of men………:)

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