Prayer and Leadership Skills
There are many opinions about how an organization, business, charity group or congregation can succeed. Strategies, planning, and vision casting are extremely important but have you ever considered the role prayer and leadership skills play in supporting one another. Here are a few quotes and scriptures on prayer to help create healthy leaders and a strong organization.
Prayer Produces Action
John Wesley once said, “Prayer is where the action is.” In this statement Wesley believed that if we are truly going to be a progressive leader we need to engage in an active prayer life. John Calvin, another early church leader, put it this way, “Our prayer must not be self-centered. It must arise not only because we feel our own need as a burden we must lay upon God, but also because we are so bound up in love for our fellow men that we feel their need as acutely as our own. To make intercession for men is the most powerful and practical way in which we can express our love for them.”
According to these two men, a developing leader is going to be a praying person.
Prayer With Purpose
Many people see prayer as one more thing to complicate their lives however, C. H. Spurgeon said that “….true prayer is measured by weight, not by length. A single groan before God may have more fullness of prayer in it than a fine oration of great length.” Real and powerful prayer does not need to take hours upon hours but it does call for us to be honest and present to God our needs with a sincere heart. Prayer is not about length and style as much as it is about honest connection with the Creator of the Universe.
Praying With Goals in Mind
Strong leadership development requires a clear understanding of the goals and directives of those being lead. John Wooden also has some great insights about how prayer can help those who are leaders. He was quoted as saying, “There are many things that are essential to arriving at true peace of mind, and one of the most important is faith, which cannot be acquired without prayer.”
Prayer Taught By Jesus
Jesus was approached by his disciples with a simple request. The following prayer scriptures from the Gospel of Luke tells of that event.
“One day Jesus was praying in a certain place. When he finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples.” He said to them, “When you pray, say:
“‘Father, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come.
Give us each day our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who sins against us.
And lead us not into temptation.’”
Then Jesus said to them, “Suppose you have a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; a friend of mine on a journey has come to me, and I have no food to offer him.’ And suppose the one inside answers, ‘Don’t bother me. The door is already locked, and my children and I are in bed. I can’t get up and give you anything.’ I tell you, even though he will not get up and give you the bread because of friendship, yet because of your shameless audacity he will surely get up and give you as much as you need. “So I say to you: Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives; the one who seeks finds; and to the one who knocks, the door will be opened.” (Luke 11:1-16)
This is the best guidance and instruction ever given on how to utilize prayer. It is a necessary practice of
1) First honoring and believing in God,
2) Asking for God’s provisions for taking care of our needs,
3) Seeking forgiveness while we practice forgiving others and
4) And seeking protection from sinful behavior.
Prayer is a healthy and powerful tool for all leaders. How is your prayer life? Do you pray for your personal leadership skills? Do you pray for those you lead and train?