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Can you really pray all day?

August 21, 2016

Usually the first things to go in a campus minister’s week are prayer and cold-contact evangelism.

Sometimes campus ministers cannot fathom how an entire day of prayer could even happen. How would it happen? What could I possibly pray about for an entire day?

If Jesus told us to, “pray that God would send laborers out into the harvest field” before he told us to “go”, then we ought to take that command seriously. (Matthew 9:37-38)

Schedule a distraction free day that will allow you to be focused on prayer and evaluation.

It is important to put it in your planner, determine a place outside your home, and have a detailed plan before the day comes.

Below is a possible schedule for you to use. It includes five categories that can guide you: Self, Staff, Students, Supporters, Saints (local church and world).

You can also think through a directional prayer emphases: upward (relationship with God), inward (relationship with believers in your life), outward (ministry to students), backward (evaluating things from last term), forward (pray through all that is coming up).

What might a day of prayer look like?

  • 8:30-9:15 spend personal time in the Word. You can even fast from breakfast. If you are interested in learning more about what it means to fast, consider reading A Hunger for God by John Piper.
  • 9:25-10:00 spend time praying for your personal growth, your personal ministry, pray through your web of relationships
  • 10:00-10:30 take a little break
  • 10:30-11:30 take a prayer walk through your target area on campus, near the freshmen dorms, near the student union, etc.
  • 11:30-1:00 lunch break
  • 1:00-2:30 pray for your support position and for your supporters. Specifically pray for them by name and their needs that you know of. Take some of this time to send some personal emails to supporters to let them know that you are praying for them, grateful for them, and ask if there are any specific ways you can be praying for them. It might also be good to get these prayer requests prior to starting your day of prayer.
  • 2:30-3:15 prayerfully read Scripture. No commentaries, no articles, and no sermons. Just you and the Bible. Read and pause along the way asking the Lord what He has in His word for you right now (specifically the prayers).
  • 3:15-3:45 let this lead you into a time of being still before the Lord. Sit in silence and ask the Lord to reveal Himself to you. You may not sense the Lord’s presence, but that’s okay. Part of this time is seeking the Lord and part of it is disciplining yourself to sit and be still before the Lord in this distracted world we live in.
  • 3:45-4:15 break
  • 4:15-4:30 pray again for the campus and students (upcoming week specifics)
  • 4:30-5:00 pray for the world. An unreached people group, a country , and also the persecuted church.

You may also be interested in our tool Day of Prayer + Evaluation: A simple guide to planning an effective personal day of prayer.