The Reluctant Prayer
It has been said that generally speaking people are reluctant to pray for their own needs. They may feel it self-centered, or even selfish to do so; they may consider praying for others a priority and that they shouldn’t be so bold as to ask anything for themselves.
Whatever the motivation, they are reluctant to offer prayers on their own behalf, even though they feel free to ask others to pray for their needs.
Of course prayers for one’s own needs might be considered selfish if the requests don’t line up with God’s will.
But just as we must love ourselves in order to love our neighbor (Jesus says “Love your neighbor as yourself), praying for ourselves might be required before we are able to pray effectively for others.
If we are not crying out to God for help in our own lives, how then can we cry out on behalf of others in their lives?
The Personal Prayer
All through scripture, we have examples of people praying for themselves and their own needs. David is a most prolific writer who frequently offers prayers for his own needs. His life was full of stress, depression, sin, and many of the issues we face in life. His prayer life shows how dependent and trusting he was of God. He cried out to God over and over to help him in every area of his life.
Praying for self might be compared to God’s grace. The privilege of prayer is a gift. Thinking it’s more important to pray for others, the country, immorality, and other issues put us in the driver’s seat and almost become a “works” prayer instead of a grace that is given to us. While it is commanded (and of the utmost importance) to pray for everything, we need to remember that praying for ourselves is included in that everything.