FIRST-PERSON: Prayer driving

by Rick Lance , posted Friday, May 04, 2018 (7 months ago)
Tags: prayer

PRATTVILLE, Ala. (BP) -- Prayerwalking is an exercise in obedience to Christ. As an act of intercession on behalf of others, it is an attempt to saturate an area where people live with prayer that they might come to the love of Christ.

I have experienced firsthand the joy of prayerwalking. Most memorably, I have prayerwalked with international missionaries and others the streets of various cities in distant parts of the world where people need to hear and heed the Gospel of Christ.

During my tenure as a state missionary, I have also learned to do some prayer driving. Since I am often in my vehicle and traveling the highways and byways here in Alabama and beyond, I have learned to focus my attention on the communities and cities across our landscape.

When entering an area, I pray generally for the people who live there. In passing churches -- many of them I know well -- I pray for the pastor by name as well as the family of faith. My prayer for the church is that they will always see themselves as an outpost of the Kingdom of God and a church family on mission with the Great Commission.

If I pass a city hall or the courthouse, I pray for the political leaders of that area. When I pass through major cities on the interstate, I pray for those metro areas too. In the open rural areas of our state, I remember those who work in agriculture.

With all the roadwork on our interstates, I find myself sitting in traffic trying not to be frustrated. Roadwork signs are abundant in our state currently. I thought I saw a sign that indicated "Roadwork Next 187 Miles." That was misreading on my part, but I must admit that I sometimes think the work on the roads is endless.

What is a good use of the time idling in traffic or rolling at a snail's pace in roadwork-related traffic? Looking at Waze (a traffic and navigation app) and trying to see how many miles more of frustration I have? No, I try to remind myself that this is a good time to pray.

My prayer list is no different from yours. I pray for the needs of people. I seek to unburden myself of the worries and concerns that weigh heavily upon my heart. I see the cars around me and whisper a prayer for those people who are unknown to me.

Prayer driving is becoming a spiritual discipline for me. It has helped me to be in touch with the Lord and the needs of others. It has calmed my spirit and cleared my mind. There are times when I find myself lost in thought and prayer as I make my way traveling. Of course, do not do prayer driving with your eyes closed.

I cannot say that I enjoy driving in traffic or in the roadwork areas of Alabama, but prayer driving has served to remind me that this state is my first mission field and therefore it needs to be immersed in prayer.

Perhaps you can find some unique times of prayer while driving. It may bring clearer focus in your walk with the Lord as a contemporary application of Paul's admonition, "Pray without ceasing." I think the apostle would say, "Amen."

Rick Lance is executive director of the Alabama Baptist State Board of Missions.
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