I want to be a person who prays more, but I just don’t know what to pray for! The truth is that nobody except Jesus is an expert at prayer (Luke 11:1; 18:1). Yet, there are a number of helps that can cause us to think more about the blessings God gives us—as well, the opportunities we have to ask God to make a difference in our world. Consider this old illustration of just using your hand to remind you of the things/people we ought to be praying for:
Thumb: It’s the closest to your body so remember to pray for those closest to you. Who is dear to you in your life? Mention them by name and ask God to meet their needs and to bless them as only He can do (Phil. 1:3-11).
Index finger: Pray for those who teach, instruct, and heal. Teachers at school, parents, your preacher, medical personnel, scientists all fall within these categories. Pray for these that they may have wisdom to “point” others in the right direction—nearer to the Lord (Colossians 4:3).
Middle finger: It’s the tallest so pray for those who are in authority. Police, firemen, government officials, and our elders. These need our prayers and for all of us to lift up them that they may have wisdom to lead and to do so with integrity and courage—but also that their leadership may cause us to be able to live quiet and peaceable lives (1 Tim. 2:1-2).
Ring finger: It’s the weakest finger we have—pray for the weak, sick, and those humbled by life or by circumstances. Pray for children—yours, others, and all that they may have influences in their lives that can lead them to a knowledge of Jesus and that they may obey it (1 Tim. 2:4).
Pinky finger: It’s the smallest (lowliest) finger that should remind you to pray for yourself. What do you want the Lord to do for you? How can He bless and enrich your life? How do you need Him to help you to become more like His Son, Jesus (2 Pet. 3:18)?
What a blessing to be able to pray!