Authentic Group Prayer

Our hope and prayer is that our small group times will be both comfortable and encouraging as we seek to be godly women. To help accomplish this goal, the following guidelines have been established:

  • The Bible is our source of truth.
    Opinions are welcome, but the Bible will be our ultimate authority.
  • Share as you feel comfortable.
    No one will be forced to share.
  • Be discreet.
    Our times together should not include gossip or bashing.
  • Be courteous.
    Don’t be judgmental or critical of others.
  • Don’t minimize another person’s comments.
  • Confidentiality is a must!
    (Unless additional people need to get involved to ensure safety for the woman or the church)

Prayer Time Guideline

1. Sharing Prayer Requests

  • Be brief.
    Only share what’s necessary. The group doesn’t need to know all the details. Make sure you allow time for others to share. 
  • Make it personal.
    How do I need to grow, change, act or react? Do I need wisdom, courage, discernment? Example: I’m in the midst of a difficult situation. Would you pray that I’ll be wise and discerning in what I do and say?
    Not: My neighbor, Sue, has been awful to me and my husband. She did____ and ____. We had to call the police, etc. Pray for Sue to apologize to us. 
  • Don’t share another’s confessions.
    That is gossip.
    Not: Karen is struggling with pornography. I think we need to pray for her. 
    Instead: A person in my life is struggling in an area. Would you pray I can give her wise counsel and encourage her?

2. When a Request is Made

  • Don’t ask people to share additional information.
    When we ask for more details, we may make the person feel uncomfortable or encourage her to share more than she wants to or should say. 
  • Be courteous.
    For some people, asking for prayer is hard. Don’t minimize their requests or be judgmental.
    Example: I’m having trouble potty training my daughter. Would you pray for me? Unhelpful responses:
    Oh, that’s no big deal. Just wait until she is in high school.
    Have you tried __________?
    She’s almost two and a half. She should be trained by now.
    My children were all trained by age two.
  • Don’t give advice.
    The women in your group are asking for prayer, not public critique. If you feel led to help someone further, first pray about it, and then seek out the person in private.

3. Pray Together

Our tendency is to spend the majority of our prayer time sharing requests and little time praying. Make sure to allot time for prayer.

© Revive Our Hearts. Used with permission.

About the Author

Sarah Stevenson

Sarah Stevenson is passionate about encouraging women in their walk with Jesus Christ. She has been married to her husband Greg for over thirty years. They have three adult children, one son-in-law and a daughter-in-law. Sarah has many years of experience serving in women's minstries. Currently she is serving as the Leader of Women's Ministries at her church in Iowa. She served on the Revive Our Hearts staff  for four years  and was the women's ministry director of a church in Indiana for six-and-a-half years. Sarah enjoys speaking at women's retreats and conferences. She treasures time with her family and friends, cooking, music, theatre, reading, and the beauty of God's creation.