If you are a praying person, you have undoubtedly taken on various prayer "burdens" through the years. But have you ever considered interceding specifically for people at your job, such as your colleagues, supervisors and employers?
Those in the workplace need you. Your prayers can be a tremendous asset to them. And whether or not you are employed at the company you are praying for, your prayers will make a significant difference.
God is looking for intercessors who will stand in the gap and pray for those in the workplace (see Ezek. 22:30). He is looking for Aarons and Hurs who will lift up the arms of business leaders so they can carry out their assignments with remarkable success (see Ex. 17:12). When you volunteer, God will place you strategically in the right place at the right time to pray so His kingdom comes and His will is done in that environment.
He has done this for me numerous times, even though I don't work in a typical office. Here's one example.
In 2000 I was leading intercession for meetings in Argentina. A visiting pastor from Singapore, whom I had met in Texas years before, was attending the event. He shared his concern about a couple in his church who were in the oil and gas business. They desperately needed prayer, and he was trying to recruit me to pray for them.
Somehow I knew I was to pray for this couple, even though I had never met them or spoken with them. Eight months later when I was ministering in Texas, I arranged to meet the couple for the first time. During lunch I shared the different points I had been praying about and the ways I had prayed for them.
Jim and Jane* were quite surprised—I guess because I am an intercessor—that I "looked normal, acted normal and spoke normal." They decided it would "work" to have me continue to pray for them.
As time passed, our relationship grew and trust developed. One day Jim called and asked me to pray for his company and partners. Operations had not been going well in the company for about 18 months. The head partner was operating unethically, cheating and working the books.
Jim and two other partners, who are all very strong Christians, were extremely concerned about the situation. They asked me to pray that they would know what to do.
I prayed that they would take a stand for righteousness and truth, do what was morally right, refuse to compromise, and be obedient when God told them what to do. The three men got together and decided that they were going to resign, start their own company founded on Christian principles and operate under those principles.
Intercession helped these three men make a difficult but correct business decision. It gave them the courage to make the change immediately. They left the company and broke through into a new place.
The three now have their own successful oil and gas company that is founded and operates on godly principles. They even wrote a vision and mission statement for their company based on the Lord's guidance.
This story is a good example not only of how God uses us to pray but also of why it is important to pray for those in the workplace. God is moving mightily in this arena, but Christian employees and business owners are constantly under attack from demonic powers. There is a steady influx of demonic influence in the workplace—partly because Satan is aware that if finances are released to advance the kingdom of God, multitudes will come to Christ and nations will be changed.
So how do you begin? Once you have made yourself available to God, the next step is to pray. Pray fervently, pray with passion, pray with understanding as the Lord gives you insight, pray in the Spirit and pray with authority. Be sure to incorporate all you know about prayer and intercession when you pray for those in the workplace. This means praying prayers of praise, thanksgiving, confession, forgiveness and petition, as well as making declarations and decrees.
Remember to put on your spiritual armor to protect yourself before you enter the spiritual arena: the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, the shoes of peace, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit (see Eph. 6:14-18). And don't stop there.
Use the appropriate weapon of warfare the Lord has made available to you for the situation you are praying about. These include praying in the name of Jesus, appropriating the blood of Jesus, praying a prayer of agreement, fasting, praising, binding and loosing, and praying the Word.
In order to be as effective as you can possibly be, seek God for a prayer strategy that will empower those in the workplace. Ask Him for words of encouragement, Scriptures and prophetic words that will build up those you are praying for.
Declare God's Word over the people, business and situations. Say what the Lord says, not what you think. When you do this, heaven moves and hell trembles. God is bound by His Word to honor His Word, His purposes and His plans. Isaiah 55:11 says, "So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; it shall not return to Me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it." (NKJV). We often see incredible breakthroughs as the result of declarations and proclamations.
One thing to be aware of regarding praying for those in the workplace is that you will have to earn their trust. If you ask a businessperson, "How can I pray for you and your business?" he or she will probably respond with a comment such as, "However the Lord directs you."
Unless they know they can trust you, business people are not going to open their hearts to you. They need to have a relationship with you first. They won't share intimate details with you right away.
But once they know who you are, affirm that you are a person of integrity and know you hear from God, then they may share a simple request with you—and over time more and more significant ones. When they do share a prayer need, whether personal or business-related, be sure to keep the information confidential. People will be much more likely to share their concerns, hurts, hopes and dreams with you if you are trustworthy.
The way you act will help determine the level of confidence those in business place in you and in what you tell them. It's important for you to look "normal," act normal and speak like a normal person.
Learn the language of the business and avoid using religious jargon. Don't be flaky or so spiritually minded that you are no earthly good. Demonstrate integrity and walk in humility.
When you begin to pray for your own workplace or any other business, you may have to do some spiritual warfare to push back the darkness so others in the workplace can pray effectively too. Help establish a godly environment for your sphere of influence by walking and praying through your work area and the rest of the building, knowing that wherever you tread, God will give you the land (see Gen 13:17).
Ask God for a time to do this type of prayer so you do not distract or offend others. You may need to do it after hours. The principles Chuck Pierce recommends for spiritually cleansing your home in his book Protecting Your Home From Spiritual Darkness can be applied very successfully in your work area.
As you grow in your understanding of the power of prayer for those in the workplace, you will be assured of just how important such prayer is and will be encouraged to continue in it. Be prepared to see results!
When you pray, the perspective of workers will shift from serving people to serving God. This mind-set will add spiritual significance and meaning to their work. It will also create a spiritual climate in which they are inspired and motivated to make wise decisions.
Your prayers will help them focus on their priorities. They will be able to sort out how their relationship with God fits into all aspects of their daily lives—their work, their families, their churches and their extracurricular activities. Your prayers will release peace and put an end to worry and anxiety, which rob them of their time and energy.
And your prayers will release God's divine power to push back evil forces that can keep doors closed. They will help release favor with key people and open doors of opportunity for those for whom you pray.
If your prayers can do all that, what are you waiting for? Here are some specific prayers you can pray for those in the workplace. Declare that:
- They will know and walk in their callings with confidence and assurance.
- They will hear God's voice and receive His plan and vision for their work.
- They will respond to the word of the Lord and put into action all He reveals.
- They will obey God's Word.
- They will walk in clarity. Rebuke any cloud of darkness that is over them. Declare that they will see situations and people as God sees them.
- They will receive godly strategies for negotiating and breaking through closed doors.
- They will be ethical, fair and just and do what is morally right.
- They will walk in integrity.
- They will be conscientious about finances and make cost-effective choices but will not compromise their values.
- They will not justify bankrupting another company they are doing business with in order to make money for their own company.
- They will not take money "under the table."
- They will be concerned not only about the bottom line (finances) but also about the people who work for them.
- They will not yield to temptations.
- They will walk in peace.
- They will use their careers to promote Christ and not Christ to promote their careers.
- They will have a sense of mission and ministry in their workplace.
- The gifts of the Spirit will operate through them.
- They will be prosperous and have the finances to do the work.
- They will be successful.
- They will raise up other leaders and empower them.
To assist you in your times of prayer, picture three concentric circles. The inner circle represents the personal lives of those you are praying for—their families and all that deals with them personally. The middle circle represents their businesses—organizations, employees, contracts, vendors, investors, customers and so on. And the outer circle represents their broader sphere of influence. You will cover all the bases if you pray for these three areas.
God is invading the workplace with His presence, His power, His authority and His majesty. He is releasing signs, wonders and miracles. But He chooses to partner with us to fulfill His purposes, so He needs us to be catalysts in prayer to advance His kingdom in the workplace.
Do your part—pray! Then trust God to do His part. The results will be amazing: God will be exalted and businesses will be transformed.
Tommi Femrite is the founder of GateKeepers International, a worldwide ministry dedicated to training and equipping intercessors. She is also the author of Praying With Purpose and a contributing author of Intercessors: Discover Your Prayer Power as well as other books.