Prayers for a Stranger

Sometimes the best thing you can do is pray.

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- Posted on Jun 29, 2021

Chocolate chip cookies; Getty Images

I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people. 1 Timothy 2:1 (NIV)

When my husband Jeff and I saw the SOLD sign on the house across the street, we cheered! We’d missed the large, lively family who’d moved away, and we were anxious to meet our new neighbors. When newlyweds Tim and Virginia, along with their big friendly dog, moved in, we couldn’t wait to get to know them. I took them a tin of my chocolate chip cookies to welcome them to the neighborhood.

Several months later, a friend told me Tim was very ill and that his prognosis was poor. We wanted to reach out to our neighbors, but as relative strangers, we didn’t want to intrude. I asked Jesus to show me what I could do for Tim and Virginia. Several times I slipped over and left a tin of cookies at their back door. We saw Tim in a wheelchair one day, and he looked very frail. We felt helpless and heartsick. I continued to wait for Jesus’s guidance for what to do.

In the meantime, every morning when I rode my bike past our neighbors’ house, I prayed for healing for Tim. Every evening when I walked past their house, I asked Jesus to be with them. Every time I drove past their house, coming or going, I prayed for comfort for Tim and Virginia. Jeff and I prayed for strength and courage for them each morning during our devotional time. Still there was no direction from Jesus. Finally, it dawned on me that maybe my lack of an answer from Jesus was an answer. Maybe praying for Tim and Virginia was the best thing I could do.

Faith Step: Pray for a stranger—the clerk at the grocery store, the delivery man, the homeless woman. We all need prayer.

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