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everyday life inside the fishbowl

Thursday Thoughts: How a Woman Can Pray for Her Husband {especially if he is a pastor}

on April 17, 2014

ImageI pray for my husband but not nearly as much as I should. I pray generically for him to have grace and strength in situations, and I pray for some certain situations that I know of. But it hasn’t seemed quite adequate.

Although every man’s occupation has its own trials and difficulties, I think a man’s occupation as a pastor has many unique difficulties. I once heard the true story of an individual who was a Satan worshiper; this person told the Christian sitting next to him on the plane that his main responsibility was to pray for the destruction of Christian marriages, especially Christian leaders’ marriages. I am sure that Satan especially targets pastors in the midst of the spiritual warfare that all Christians are involved in (cf. Ephesians 6:10-20).

Besides this difficulty, a pastor often does not share with anyone–including his wife–the specific difficulties going on in the church he attends, which is also his job {read: the church is (mostly) his life}. Although this confidentiality is a protection for both the congregation and for the pastor’s wife, it is also somewhat of a limitation for praying specifically for the pastor/husband. {As a side note, having been a senior pastor’s wife for about 9-1/2 months, I know 1000x better how to pray for other senior pastors and their wives!}

All of that being said, sometimes I just don’t know how to pray for my pastor-husband as I ought. While it is a comfort when “we do not know what to pray for as we ought,” that “the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groaning too deep for words” (Romans 8:26), I don’t want to always leave it at these wordless prayers!

So, I decided to read 2 Timothy and turn Paul’s encouragement and exhortations into prayers for my husband. This passage is especially apt for him, because he is in the ministry. If you are a ministry wife, I would encourage you to pray these words for your husband (and tell him you are doing so!) Even if you are not a ministry wife, I am sure that any pastor or husband would be encouraged to know someone was praying in this way for him!

Here is a list of things to pray for your husband/pastor, chronologically listed, from 2 Timothy:

1. I pray that you would fan into flame your gifts with courage, love, and self control (1:6-7).

2. I pray that you would not be ashamed of the Gospel, but rather suffer for it by God’s power, the same power that saved you (1:8-12).

3. I pray that you would be strengthened by the grace that is in Christ Jesus (2:1).

4. I pray that you would pass the Gospel on to faithful men who will then teach others (2:2).

5. I pray that you would share in suffering as a good soldier of Jesus Christ (2:3).

6. I pray that you would have a single-minded desire to please God (2:4).

7. I pray that you would obey God’s rules in order to succeed (2:5).

8. I pray that you would work hard, holding to the promise of blessing (2:6).

9. I pray that you (especially in times of suffering) would think and meditate on these things (#5-7), knowing that God will give you understanding (2:7).

10. I pray that you would remember the Gospel, namely Jesus Christ, the One who is risen from the dead (2:8).

11. I pray that you would be moved to endurance by the truths of the Gospel (2:10-13).

12. I pray that you would zealously pursue God’s approval by correctly handling Scripture (2:15).

13. I pray that you would avoid irreverent babble (2:16).

14. I pray that you would flee youthful passions and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace (2:22).

15. I pray that you would avoid foolish and ignorant controversies; rather than being quarrelsome, I pray that you would be kind to everyone, able to teach, patiently endure evil, and gently correct opponents, for some might repent (2:23-24).

16. I pray that you will understand that there will be times of difficulty with sinful people who have an external appearance of godliness yet deny the Gospel; I pray that you would avoid these people (3:1-9)

17. I pray that, despite persecution, you would continue in what you’ve learned in Scripture, knowing that it is profitable for teaching, reproof, correction, and training in righteousness. I pray that you would be competent and equipped for every good work (3:10-17).

18. I pray that you would preach the word, in season and out of season. I pray that you would reprove, rebuke, and exhort with complete patience and teaching–especially in a time when people won’t endure sound teaching but rather find teachers who suit their own fancy and wander from truth to myths (4:1-4).

19. I pray that you would always be sober-minded, endure suffering, do the work of an evangelist, and fulfill your ministry (4:5).

20. I pray that you would be encouraged by Paul’s example of one who has fought the good fight, finished the race, kept the faith, and received a crown of righteousness (4:6-8).

21. I pray that the Lord be with your spirit. I pray that grace be with you (4:22).


{On Thursdays, I share some thoughts about what God is teaching me in my various roles as a Christian, a woman, a wife, a mother, and a pastor’s wife.}


One response to “Thursday Thoughts: How a Woman Can Pray for Her Husband {especially if he is a pastor}

  1. Linda Huffstutler says:

    Matthew Henry said that pastors were in the front battle lines in spiritual warfare….specific targets for Satan’s attacks. May we who follow encourage and pray for protection of those who minister to us and lead us as well as for other church leaders. Let us also pray for their families

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