I’ll never forget the look on his face when I told him that I wanted to pray for him as a leader. A look of shock was quickly masked by looking away; and then, a gentle tear fell. This man, a New Your Times Best Seller, speaker, and leader, was truly taken back when someone genuinely asked to pray specifically for him as a leader.
That weekend I had heard him share about handling some of the difficult situations that confront him, and was so impressed by his responses. As I listened, God whispered, “Jen, he needs your prayers. He’s lonely. No one prays for the leader, remember how you felt?” I too was taken back at this God whisper. What? Him? Really God?
As a leader, our decisions are impactful, our pressure is incredible, our stress seems unmanageable, and our ethics and faith, well… invaluable! It is a challenging position, and all too often, it is lonely. Others see the polished exterior, but don’t see the crumbling professional that lives on the inside trying to hold themselves together.
Do You Pray for Those You Lead?
The Apostle Paul often started his letters with the phrase, “I have not stopped praying for you.” As a leader he prayed for those who followed him. If you are a leader, do you pray for the people you lead?
Not just when they are sick, or have some major family situation occurring, but regularly pray for them? For their satisfaction in their job, for their joy, for their accurate work, or their career progression, or, or, or. You get my point.
Do You Pray for Those Who Lead You?
The Apostle Paul also often asked for prayer. Paul, one of the leaders of the Apostles, knew of his need for prayer, and valued it. Are you praying for your boss? Perhaps he or she isn’t as bold in asking for prayer as Paul; who regularly wrote statements similar to this…
“I urge you, brothers and sisters, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to join me in my struggle by praying to God for me.” – Romans 15:30
Paul understood the value of having the people he was leading praying for him. Because he was in the habit of praying for others, he knew the transformational power of prayer.
Pray for ALL of Our Leaders
Over the last several years, I’ve been praying for leaders. I keep a list of 10 leaders who I am actively praying for. Many of them know I pray for them and are invited to send specific requests.Several of them have no idea. I allow the Holy Spirit to move and let me know who to specifically ask, and who to just pray for, without their knowledge and direct input. My list is fluid and changes week to week.
As a church in America, we do an okay (at best) job of encouraging our people to pray for church leadership and the leaders of our nation.
Yet we forget the impact that the marketplace community has. We underestimate the impact and influence that these leaders have in the lives of many, many people. Their decisions are extremely significant.
Just today, I was in a conversation discussing an organization that is closing and terminating 750 workers. Hard decisions! Those leaders need to be consistently lifted up in prayer.
Too often we pray for our job after it is too late. Let’s join arms and pray for our leaders. If prayer changes things, why do we wait until we see dire circumstances?
What leader might God put on your heart to pray for? Will it move them to tears? I think you’ll be surprised.
About the Author
Jen is currently president of J.S. Leadership Group and has been a human resources professional and leadership consultant for nearly 19 years. Jen holds an MBA from The University of South Dakota and is a certified SPHR. From joint ventures to leadership coaching, Jen has ample business and real life experience.
Described as genuine, Jen’s approach to writing offers snippets of a working mama sharing Jesus while living in our everyday ordinary world. She’s passionate about teaching Jesus lovers how to be real in their everyday life; at work, at home, at church, and infusing real prayer techniques into our everyday routines.
Jen and her husband Tom have the joy of parenting 3 young kids and 2 adult children, and chasing Jesus in the process.