Consider these ideas for infusing your worship service with prayer.
- Pray in pairs
Between verses of a hymn, invite the congregation to pray in pairs, focusing on the lyrics they have just sung.
- Use the lyrics of a song as a prayer
Between verses of a choir selection, have someone prepared to pray (on microphone or standing in the congregation), using
the lyric of the preceding verse to focus the prayer.
- Invite worshipers to write a praise or petition on a card
Instruct them to bring the cards to the front and place them in a basket at any time during the worship service, whenever
the Holy Spirit prompts them.
- Guide prayer using introductory remarks:
“As a sign of our praise and adoration of God, please stand;” or
“As a sign of our humility, please kneel (if you are physically able) as we confess our sins;” or
“As a sign of our unity in Christ, please form a group with three or four others. We will recite the Lord’s Prayer together.”
- Invite families to pray
Invite parents and children to pray together-holding hands, forming circles, or walking together to pray at the altar.
- Invite prayer following songs
Ask the congregation to pray silently after each worship song, using the song’s lyrics to focus their prayers. Select songs
that establish a flow of thought-praise, repentance, intercession, commitment.
- Use visuals to focus prayer:
Banners -”Great is the Lord!”;
Flags -”Pray for the nation of ___;”
Posters -”Our youth are reminding us of their summer mission trip;”
Bulletin inserts -”Today, with churches across the country, we are asking God for improved race relations;”
PowerPoint® - “Pray with your eyes open. Offer a prayer for each of these needs.” Use words, images,
photographs, or people’s faces.
- Spend a series of Sundays praying for various church ministries:
“This morning, as our Sunday School teachers and workers stand among us, we will pray for them and the people they serve.
Please focus on someone near you. Walk over to that person and pray aloud for God’s blessing as that person serves God in our
- Invite prayer in response to special music
Ask the congregation to listen prayerfully to the song being sung (solo or ensemble). Then invite everyone to stand and
respond with small-group prayer.
- Invite the congregation to pray in pairs before the offering is taken:
“This morning, before we invite you to offer your gifts to God (the offering), please find a partner and ask the Lord to
bless what we are giving and to use it for His glory.”
- Use Scripture for guided prayer:
“As I read this morning’s Scripture, I will pause after each section and invite you to pray, using the verses we have just
heard to direct our prayers.”
- Use the church prayer list or specific church ministries to guide a prayer:
“Please take your bulletin (or the church prayer list) with you as we form groups of three or four. Ask the Holy Spirit to
guide you to one of the activities or ministries as you pray for our church. You may be led to pray for our staff or that all
of us as members will be faithful to our mission (or vision) statement.”
- Voice brief prayers during an instrumental
Ask someone to voice brief prayers that will help the congregation focus their thoughts during an instrumental. Pause after
each voiced prayer to allow time for silent prayer in the church.
- Pray for ministry leaders
When the children or youth or a specific ministry group sings before the congregation, invite their leaders to come forward
after the song; pray for the leaders and the entire group.
- Voice prayers in response to choir specials
In advance ask several people to be prepared to pray after a choir anthem, basing their prayer on the message of the song.
- After the message, invite people to pray in groups before the final song.