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Our Earnest Prayers in Their Behalf

“Do our spouses, children, and other family members likewise feel the power of our prayers offered unto the Father for their specific needs & desires? Do those we serve hear us pray for them with faith and sincerity? If those we love & serve have not heard and felt the influence of our earnest prayers in their behalf, then the time to repent is now.” (David A. Bednar, Increase in Learning, p.126, Emphasis Added)

This can begin in the home. Before family prayer in the evening, invite each person to share a little bit about their day, what went well, what made them struggle, etc. Then, whoever offers the prayer will have real and important matters with which to take the to the Lord.

Hearing your father, mother, brother, sister, son or daughter pray sincerely and specifically for you and your well-being is a rich experience.

Imagine what an impact this could have as we apply these principles as we pray in our church meetings or during a home or visiting teaching session. When asked for volunteers to pray before and after a lesson this Sabbath day, why not raise your hand and experiment with these principles?

When we move away from robotically  “saying prayers” and towards genuinely offering prayers, we will find tremendous blessings and healing of souls.

  • Richard J. Nobbe III

    I told myself I wouldn’t continue to be the first one to respond to your posts, but this one is very dear and tender to my heart. What a wonderful thing it is to hear another person pray to the Father on your behalf. I had a sweet experience from my mission that I would like to share: My companion and I were in the back seat of a car driving to the Temple to witness the sealing of a family we had been working with. A really awesome couple from the ward was driving us, and about half-way there, the sweet wife mentioned to her husband, “Honey, we forgot to have family prayer this morning!” Almost immediately we pulled off to the side of the road, and they called home on one of their cell phones. Immediately they instructed whoever answered the phone to “round-up” all the kids so they could have family prayer over the phone. The prayer was offered by the mother, and what then occurred in my heart and in my mind is too sacred to discuss. This much I can say – the joy I felt was overwhelming as I heard this sweet sister pray individually for every member of her family.

    In my journal that night I wrote that, “If all children could hear their parents pray for them by name every single day, it wouldn’t matter what happened at school, in the world, with their friends…and so on, as long as they KNEW they had a mother and a father and a home to come to – a place where they would always be loved and accepted for who they are – nothing else would matter. The Lord would place a powerful shield of protection around that home and the family living therein.

    Now, we as earthly parents are not perfect. We make mistakes, get angry, and forget to say our prayers from time to time, (at least I do). And I’m not suggesting that we should always stop our vehicles to call home for a family prayer, (although maybe we should more often than we shouldn’t). But what I am saying is that we all have the divine potential to be the kind of parents: fathers, mothers, sons, daughters – the children of God – that we want to become! And when that potential is realized, the Lord is able to strengthen that family in ways that may seem impossible or unlikely.

    This experience really, like every other good thing, pointed me to the Savior. It made me wonder what it would be like to have Heavenly Parents pray to us on our behalf. Is there an instance of this in the scriptures? Well, yes there is. When one accepts that Jesus Christ becomes our Father when we enter into the baptismal covenant, there are instances of the Savior praying for us mortals. The great Intercessory Prayer in John 17 immediately comes to mind. Also, I think of the Resurrected Savior who comes to the ancient inhabitants of the Americas. The record states, “And after this manner do they bear record: The eye hath never seen, neither hath the ear heard, before, so great and marvelous things as we saw and heard Jesus speak unto the Father. And no tongue can speak, neither can there be written by any man, neither can the hearts of men conceive so great and marvelous things as we both saw and heard Jesus speak; and no one can conceive of the joy which filled our souls at the time we heard him pray for us unto the Father” (3 Nephi 17:16-17).

    Lastly, we know that one of the Savior’s role’s is that of “Advocate with the Father.” So in a very real way, the Savior will “plead to the Father” for each of us at the Tribunal. That is his promise to us. Will we be sufficiently prepared? Will the Savior be able to make a good case for us? Will we have “humbled ourselves sufficiently?” (Alma 5).

    Praying out loud for each other with real intent is one of the most intimate, tender, sweetest things we can do for each other. That is my testimony.

    • oneclimbs

      Hey, if you want to comment, go ahead. I enjoy your perspective and being there to kick off the conversation!

      • Richard J. Nobbe III

        Thanks. You’re a kind man. : )