Last night, we had a time of prayer specifically for the lost—those who do not know Christ as Lord and Savior. What prompted this prayer meeting was an initiative called “With One Voice” by the Kentucky Baptist Convention to have all Kentucky Baptist churches pray during their Wednesday evening prayer service on Sept. 10.
During this service, we read Scripture, sang some songs dealing with prayer and revival among our people. Then we passed out what we call a “Five Alive” card where we supplied each person with two names from the 114 names on the “Salvation” portion of our Boone’s Creek Prayer Guide. With those two names were three blanks for them to fill in names of people they know. I encouraged them to consider those who were closest to them (family, friends, co-workers) rather than someone they did not know (for more on this, read Oscar Thompson’s Concentric Circles of Concern).
One of my favorite things to do during a prayer service is to have our people spread out over our 50 or so pews and pray for those who may come into our service. If your church is like most of ours, you know where most of your regular attenders sit. But it’s a joy not only to pray for them but also to pray for others whom God may have come in. It really gives our members an outward looking perspective and gives us great anticipation.
The part that meant most to me was when Alex Marshall, Jr., one of our deacons, had Ron Chaffins (our minister of music) and myself kneel at the steps up to the platform, followed by the church coming forward and laying their hands on us as they prayed for us. It reminded me of Col. 4:2-4 when Paul exhorted the Colossians church:
Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.  At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison—  that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak.
This prayer time really lifted my spirit up to heaven. Pastors bear a heavy burden in seeking to strengthen the flock as well as to share the Gospel with a lost and dying community. May our hearts begin to be crafted toward prayer for the lost and for the ministers of the Gospel who share His message. May our heart desire to be equipped to know what this message is so we can share it rightly. May praying for the lost never be lost on us!