At some point in our Christian walk, all of us face opposition from within the church. When that happens for you, here are some ways to pray:
- Pray for wisdom in knowing how and when to respond. God’s Word tells us that He will give us wisdom if we ask (James 1:5), so ask. Perhaps He will use tools like this post to help you know what steps to take.
- Pray for truth to become evident. Sometimes, the opposition is based on wrong information. At other times, the stated opposition only masks ungodly motivations of ungodly people. In some cases, we’re simply at fault. Ask God to make the truth known, whatever it is.
- Pray for God to make you teachable. My experience is that my church opponents often had something I needed to hear, even if it were only 1 percent of verbalized complaints. Being willing to learn from the 1 percent will make you a better leader.
- Pray for spiritual eyes to see the real enemy. People can be headaches, but they’re not the ultimate enemy we face (Eph. 6:12). When we realize that “flesh and blood” are not the problem, we’ll respond differently to conflict.
- Pray for those who oppose you. Jesus not only required us to pray for those who abuse us (Luke 6:28), but He also modeled praying for those who opposed Him (Luke 23:34). If He could pray for His murderers, we can pray for our church opposition.
- Pray that all involved, including you, would confess and repent where needed. Confession brings our sin out of the darkness, and repentance breaks the devil’s hold in our life. Both are usually in order when church opposition grows in intensity.
- Pray for unity in the Body. Godly unity is nothing less than a supernatural miracle, so it’s no wonder that Jesus prayed multiple times for unity in His prayer of John 17. Our unity becomes a witness to a fractured world.
- Pray that your family will not be harmed in the process. Too many spouses and children bear scars of yesterday’s church battles. Ask God to protect your family from that kind of aftermath.
- Pray that God will be glorified. In the middle of the conflict, it’s not always easy to see how that might happen – but God can magnify His name however He wishes.
What prayers might you add?