In case you haven’t figured it out yet, I tend toward the uber-organized side of life. I prefer structure, routine, and schedules. And so, when it comes to my prayer life, likely no one who knows me is shocked to find I have a method of structuring my time there as well.
A few years ago my dad mentioned in passing that he uses a prayer calendar to organize his prayer life. Immediately, I was hooked! After asking him a few questions, I began to develop my own prayer calendar.
In simplest terms, a prayer calendar is a tool for organizing the major areas of prayer in your life. I use both weekly and monthly prayer calendars to insure that I spend time focused in prayer for specific people and issues. What is included on my prayer calendar has changed over the years as our life situation has changed. For example, in June 2009 I shared what my prayer calendar looked like on my personal blog … at that time it involved praying through “The Power of …” books for my husband, my daughter, and myself twice a year. While I still devote plenty of time to praying for each member of our family, I have added some other areas of prayer into the calendar.
As I mentioned before, I pray every day for my husband, my daughter, and myself and I use my daytimer to review the schedule for the day and specific prayer needs in my extended family, my church and my community. Below are the weekly and monthly prayer calendars I use as I pray in my quiet time.
- Sunday ~ Churches. I pray for mine as well as the ones pastored by my daddy and my brother and many of our friends. In addition, I pray for those churches who are seeking pastors and are facing difficulties. For my own church, I pray through the schedule, lifting up Sunday School teachers and nursery workers, the technical components of the services, the sermon and the music, those who are deciding if they will even attend services today, and those who need a touch from the Lord.
- Monday ~ Church Staff and their Families. Mondays are typically the staff meeting day at our church. I pray for all five of our pastors and their family members by name. If I am aware of a specific request or need, I lift that up at this time. In addition, I try to take time to send a note of encouragement (even just an email) to one of our pastors or their wives. I also pray for Scott’s relationships with the other pastors of our church. I ask for wisdom and humility for each of these men.
- Tuesday ~ Specific Church Ministries. I pray for the specific ministries of our church and their leadership. From children’s ministry to senior adults, ministries to men and to women, student ministry and family ministry – I pray for each of these as well as the other ways our church seeks to reach out to others.
- Wednesday ~ My Family. I pray for my family members by name on Wednesdays. I am blessed with a large family and take time on Wednesdays to pray for grandparents and cousins, my brothers and their families and many aunts and uncles.
- Thursday ~ Community Ministries. Thursday mornings I spend at Care Net. I pray on Thursdays for the many ministries in our community seeking to spread the Gospel while meeting the practical needs around them. I also pray for the leadership of ministries such as the BCM on our local college campus, the Baptist Ministry Center, and the Manna House.
- Friday ~ Scott’s Family. I devote Friday to praying for Scott’s family members. We are blessed with very close relationships with his family and it is a joy to lift them up to the Lord in prayer.
- Saturday ~ The Lost. I keep a list in my Bible of people who are unsaved that I am praying for. On Saturdays I pray for each of them by name.
Monthly Prayer Calendar:
- January ~ Focus and direction. In January, I pray through each activity I am involved with – from ministries in the church to websites I write for … and I lay each one down and ask the Lord if I should pick it up again.
- February ~ My daughter‘s birthday month! I pray for her using “The Power of a Praying Parent.”
- March ~ Government. I pray throughout this month for local, state, and national government leaders.
- April ~ North American mission field. I devote April to praying for God’s direction for those who are missionaries here in North America. I also pray for those who are planting churches in the United States.
- May ~ Summer. I pray for the summer months – how we should use them as a family. What we should include and what we need to say “no” to. I always want to be certain we are allowing time for rest and also for ministry.
- June ~ My husband’s birthday month and our anniversary month. I pray for him using “The Power of a Praying Wife.”
- July ~ Adopting families. It seems like I know so many families who are adopting. In July I spend extra time praying specifically for their needs and desires … and for those sweet children who have not yet arrived home.
- August ~ Back to School!! I devote August to praying for teachers and school leaders. And for sweet families who are beginning their homeschooling year. I especially pray for those teachers in public schools who will daily have the opportunity to shine light into darkness!
- September ~ Friends. Just taking time to pray for those women who have influenced my life – and though our friendship may have only lasted a season, I lift them up to the Lord and pray for them throughout September.
- October ~ My birthday month! I pray for myself using “The Power of a Praying Woman.”
- November ~ Month of gratitude! I want to be intentionally cultivating a thankful heart. One way I do this is by listing the things I am thankful for according to the date. For example, on November 11, I list 11 things I am thankful for.
- December ~ Our denominational missions focus is on international missions throughout this month. I pray for those missionaries in other nations and for the unreached people groups.
So, there you have it! A long post (sorry!) but hopefully one that will be helpful to some!
How do you organize your prayer life?
Books I have found useful:
The Power of a Praying … books by Stormie Omartian
Becoming a Woman of Prayer by Cynthia Heald
The Practice of the Presence of God by Brother Lawrence