When we think about praying evangelistically, praying for the lost is kind of like hitting the ball in tennis – it’s imperative. And we get that. But what we may not get are the various components needed in order to do it effectively. In tennis, hitting the ball effectively includes things like footwork, watching the ball, and a proper swing and follow-through. In the same way, praying effectively for the lost includes praying specifically – and biblically.
For example, regarding a lost person in your life, you could pray – ‘Father, I pray that You will open _______’s heart so that he/she will receive and believe the gospel.’ We see this specific prayer applicable to the conversion of Lydia in the book of Acts.
In Acts 16:14, we read – “The Lord opened her [Lydia’s] heart to heed the things spoken by Paul.” Paul was no doubt a man of prayer as his New Testament letters clearly communicate. And although the scripture doesn’t tell us he specifically prayed for God to open up Lydia’s heart, we do know he prayed for openness.
For in Colossians 4:2 he asked the Church in Colossae to pray that ‘God would open to us a door for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ.’
There is a vast array of biblical prayers for lost people. I recommend an excellent resource from Dr. Kevin Meador called kingdompraying.com. At that website there are biblical prayers for various areas of the Christian life, including praying for the lost. Here’s a link to that page.
So pray specifically for the lost – pray biblically, pray expectantly, pray in faith… and watch God move!
“Call to Me and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” Jeremiah 33:3