Praying for Others
I suppose it is possible to be a gifted leader, generally speaking, without a vital prayer life. But in the life of the Christian leader, the role of prayer cannot be overestimated. It is not possible to be a faithful Christian, much less a Christian leader, without prayer.
The Old Testament, of course, is full of examples of fervent and effectual prayer, especially voiced by chosen leaders, whether patriarchs, prophets, priests, or kings. Prayer was later part of the curriculum that Jesus taught His disciples (Matt. 6:5–15; Luke 11:1–13). Prayer was displayed in the lives of early church leaders. And prayer has been the vital breath of believers down through the centuries.
Definitions of prayer are like definitions of a sunset; they don’t capture the reality, dynamic, and beauty of the subject itself. We know also that there are many different aspects and types of prayer, as the Psalms and other biblical examples reveal. So we would be merely scratching the surface to try to present the various dimensions of prayer.
All true prayer is directed toward God. This may seem obvious, but it is important to stress because the leader lives in the context of people, tasks, problems, pressures, and circumstances. It is possible as a leader to think in a cause-effect framework that leaves God out altogether. The reality of life on the horizontal level can take over, and we can lose the sense of the constant responsibility and joy of