“Everything worked out! Thank you, I know you have been praying for me.” She looked me straight in the eye with a smile on her face, truly grateful for my prayers. I smiled back but my heart sank, I hadn’t prayed. I had completely forgotten!
Even though everything worked out, I felt like a horrible friend. She had opened her heart to me, shared a major concern, and asked me to pray, but I didn’t follow through.
“This is why I rarely promise to pray for people!” I silently scolded myself, “I almost always forget to follow through; then the “thanks for praying” comes and I feel bad for forgetting and guilty for accepting thanks I didn’t deserve. Who wants to deal with all of that? Better to just avoid prayer requests…right?”
After this situation occurred, the Lord began pressing on my heart the need to do some self-examination. Where was my attitude towards praying for others coming from?
Philippians 2:3-4 held the answer.
“Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others.”
It all became clear in reading those two verses.
It was selfish of me to avoid taking prayer requests because they might lead to feelings of guilt. It was also selfish of me to not pray for others whether I had been asked to or not.
Didn’t I always ensure my needs were brought before God? Was I more important than my friends? Were my needs more important? I never consciously thought I was more important, but my actions revealed the truth.
God’s message was loud and clear now, I needed to pray for others.