Tuesday, February 19, 2013


A couple weeks back I felt inspired to start a prayer plan.  It was on a whim. I was on Facebook and while on my page I noticed to one side the 8 little thumbnail photos of some of my "Friends."  I had a while back done it before, but nothing "official" or "public."  So I snapped a photo with my phone and with a little help from the PicsArt app and Instagram I notified my social media world that I would be praying for the top 8 that God, or Facebook and highlighted for the given day.

After I did it a time or two, a couple of my friends joined in as well as my oldest son.  "You started something cool, mama," my oldest posted to my Facebook page a few days later.  Apparently, it was catching on, and friends of friends who thought the idea was cool, touching or just smart joined in too.  I thought "Great!"

During this same time I am trying to cut down on having my phone with me or using it when I'm around other people.  So I carry the card in my pocket, and every time I thought about checking Instagram, Facebook or playing another round of "Words with Friends," instead of my phone being handy, my prayer list was instead.One thing I noticed after doing it a while was that the list got repetitive.  I noticed that it was rotating pretty consistently through the same 25 friends or so.  And I thought about all the Facebook friends I had that weren't getting prayed for. 25 out of 706 didn't feel very effective to me.  So I started thinking about how I might be able to do things differently and pray for more people. In fact, I wanted to pray for them all.

Now let me say, I am NOT an intercessor.  In fact I am actually not very proud of all of my "prayer skills." So watching how this prayer project has been affecting me, as well as the snowball effect it seems to be having makes me very confident that this isn't just MY good idea, but rather a God idea.  But even if I'm wrong, prayer is a good thing, right?  I'll be honest I have second guessed myself when I have had people on my list who I don't know are necessarily Christians.  Will saying "I'll pray for you offend someone?  I can't know, it's a strange world these days.  But I felt inclined to press on, and my nerdy math oriented mind tried to figure out how I could manage this, how many people per day? how many days? 706 was a strange number.  But when I revisited the idea of 8 per day, I felt more compelled.  You see 8 per day would take 88 days. And I know biblically speaking, 8 is the number for "new beginnings."  And so I think that fits very well with this prayer theme, praying it for others and creating it for myself by partnering with Jesus in prayer. (Which by the way, some say 8 stands for Jesus, but I'm not familiar with that.)

So I hit the store for supplies as the plan and idea formulated in my mind.  Index cards of course were necessary, a place to keep all the names I had printed off of Facebook.  And maybe a way to keep everything together as a keepsake about this journey in prayer I was about to take. So I bought the cards, an interesting square jar, a photo album and some colorful pens.

The 4x6 index cards will fit perfectly into the sleeves of the photo album.  Who knows, perhaps I will someday gt to look back on answered prayers. If nothing else it will be like postcards on my journey with the Lord.

As I sat and cut the list I printed in to little individual strips and folded them up into the jar, I realized Facebook had a few surprises on the list for me.  People who aren't real, pets, people who aren't on Facebook anymore (and therefore probably not counted among my 706.)  There are a few deceased friends there, a few business and ministries (which are also "friends" worthy of prayer.") So if they were living and breathing, I threw the "name" into the jar.  And I realized the my #8for88 plan (and hashtag) were probably going to end up being more of an estimation than an actuality.  But I certainly didn't think that ought to slow me down.

I'm still going to start on Thursday (which will be 8 days left in the month of February) and if I am right about the 88 days, I will end on May EIGHTeenth.  I love the consistency of the "new beginnings" theme.  Wouldn't it be funny if I went 8 days over?  But I digress.  I have titled this event ahead (and hashtagged it) #ProjectPrayer.  I am excited about the endeavor ahead.  And I also want to challenge my friends to create Prayer Projects of their own.  It doesn't have to be what I'm doing, be inventive.  Or borrow the #8perDay plan.  This is what I know, we say say prayer makes a difference, but do we live like it?  My thought has been, some of my "Facebook friends" might not ever have anyone else ever pray for them.  Granted some of them are practical (or actual) strangers, and I may not have any clue what to pray, but I can pray for God to work in their lives-- He knows the right prayer even if I don't.  The point is, what if IA m the only one to evr lift that person's name up to the Father.  I also have condfidence that God can be a big influence in who gets pulled when, and so maybe a name will come out of that jar on just the right day when they need wisdom, or safety or strength.  I don't know, but God does, and this is an opportunity to line up with His plan.  I'm excited.  I would love to have you join me.  If you do use the hashtag #projectprayer on Instagram or Twitter if you share your adventure there.  Or email me and tell me your plan, or comment here.  I am excited!  Join me, it's going to be a wonderful adventure!

(My Facebook page as I kick off #ProjectPrayer on 2/21/13)