First Presbyterian Church Prayer Ministry

The goal of the Prayer Ministry at First Presbyterian Church is a church filled with people who listen to God, who are growing in faith, love, and obedience, and who pray continually about everything with confidence that God is hearing their prayers and answering them. The Prayer Ministry organizes seminars on prayer, encourages people to pray, coordinates First Presbyterian Church participation in the National Day of Prayer, and has opened a prayer room in the South Chapel.
For more information, contact Prayer Ministry coordinator:
Sonja West

Submit a Prayer Request

You can use our easy submission form to submit a prayer request.

Thoughts on Prayer

“These I will bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer…for my house shall be called a house of prayer for all peoples.” —Isaiah 56:7
“Prayer is our side of the friendship we experience in our relationship with Almighty God.” —Earl Palmer
“What if God does not demand prayer as much as gives prayer?  What if God wants prayer in order to satisfy us?  What if prayer is a means of God nourishing, restoring, healing, converting us?  Suppose prayer is primarily allowing ourselves to be loved, addressed and claimed by God.  What if praying means opening ourselves to the gift of God’s own self and presence?  What if our part in prayer is primarily letting God be giver?  Suppose prayer is not a duty but the opportunity to experience healing and transforming love?” —Martin Smith

Prayer Updates


A Prayer Story From Betty McCartney

Two prayers my husband and I prayed when we were living in Sydney, Australia as missionaries with The Navigators continue to have a profound effect on me today.
The first came after ten years of marriage. We had adopted two wonderful children who were seven and five years old. My husband had always said he wanted to have four children, but we were at the age where we could no longer adopt. We were too old! So we continued to ask the Lord for a child to be born to us if that was God’s will. We weren’t “driven” to keep asking for a child but did hope that God would grant our request.
Then, after ten years of marriage with zero pregnancies, I became pregnant and a son was born to us on Christmas day! Our five year old said, “He and God were born on the same day!” God then gave us another child, a daughter, born to us fifteen months later. Wow! We had our four children and God did it His way and in His time.
A second very special answer is this.
In Sydney we rented our home the first four years we lived there. Seeing money being spent rather than invested seemed a waste and also poor money management, but we didn’t have any extra money that could be used as a down payment on a house. So we asked the Lord to allow us to buy a home when we returned to Australia after our first home assignment. We still didn’t have any means of raising that money, but God did.
We returned to Australia and this time we were assigned to Brisbane and the Queensland University ministry. A friend from the Sydney ministry told us on our return that he and his wife wanted to give us a down payment on a house! So we very happily found and purchased a home. During our time there, that house increased in value, and when we returned to the US we were able to purchase a home in Bellevue, WA. As missionaries we had been unable to put much into savings for the future, and this was a concern for us when my husband became ill. After he went to be with the Lord in 1999 and I moved to Puyallup, I sold the Bellevue house. I have been retired now for 13 years and am blessed to be able to continue to supplement my social security retirement income with the funds invested from the sale of that house. Little did our Sydney friends know what a long-term impact that gift would have!
I have come to love the passage on prayer in Luke 18. Jesus tells the disciples to pray and not to give up, keep on praying, then He gives the parable of the widow and the unjust judge explaining that God is not like the unjust judge, but loves to give us good things! We may have to wait a while, even a long time, but He hears and answers because He loves us!

A Prayer Story From Morf Morford

It’s fair to say that real prayer emerges from two places—first, a situation that drives us to it and second, a spirit or sensibility that easily and naturally flows to a place of prayer. And by real prayer I don’t mean prayer that emerges from rules or practices (like praying before meals or at bedtime). Being thankful for our nourishment and those we share our lives with is wonderful—but it is rarely a prayer of passion, confession, or confrontation with life’s immensities.
We all know, I presume, the prayers of need, sorrow, and desperation, but what of the prayer that so easily flows from a “simple” act of generosity, compassion, and connection?
These are the “prayers in action” that we see sometimes in children.
I am not at all convinced that we need more workshops, books, or programs on prayer; I do believe that we need more prayers of sacrifice, kindness, and perhaps even freedom to the point of abandon.
If our prayers are predictable, how can our faith flourish?
I defy you to keep a dry eye as you see this story of a child’s faith in action… by linking to

Behind the Scenes: The Context Associated With the Week 6 Verses (Printed Version of the Book) and the Week 4 Verses (Electronic Version of the Book)

Printed Version of the Book Week 6, Day 1 (Oct. 17): Matthew 6:9-13

Electronic Version of the Book Week 4, Day 1 (Oct. 3): Matthew 6:9-13

This version of what commonly is known as the Lord’s Prayer is not the only one that is recorded in the Bible. It was intended to offer a model to all disciples regarding the important considerations that should be included in community prayer. Biblical scholars note that it was not intended to be the model for private prayers, but its structure certainly is beneficial in those cases, too.

Printed Version of the Book Week 6, Day 2 (Oct. 18): Ephesians 3:14-19

Electronic Version of the Book Week 4, Day 2 (Oct. 4): Ephesians 3:14-19

This passage continues the prayer that Paul began earlier in this chapter. It describes petitions that would lead to believers being led to work in a way that realizes God’s full intentions for them. It is written to the Father and is positioned from a family perspective—in this case the church family that shares God’s life and nature.

Printed Version of the Book Week 6, Day 3 (Oct. 19): Colossians 1:9-12

Electronic Version of the Book Week 4, Day 3 (Oct. 5): Colossians 1:9-12

The earlier verses in this chapter are foundational, describing the need for Christians to gain knowledge that leads to obedience to the will of God. These verses move ahead to indicate how knowledge leads to service, which results in receiving the strength necessary to endure and be patient on this journey. The closing reminds us that all thanks for these opportunities and gifts belong to God.

Printed Version of the Book Week 6, Day 4 (Oct. 20): Ephesians 1:17-19

Electronic Version of the Book Week 4, Day 4 (Oct. 6): Ephesians 1:17-19

Paul prayed for the Ephesians to have increased faith in Christ and a supportive attitude toward other believers, acknowledging that they were already blessed with these things through the presence of the Holy Spirit in their hearts. He wanted a deeper understanding for them, however. Basically, he is saying that an intellectual understanding is insufficient; only an understanding that reaches out from our hearts, the very center of our beings, will lead us to riches of his glorious inheritance and the incomparably great power of believers.

Printed Version of the Book Week 6, Day 5 (Oct. 21): 1 Chronicles 4:10

Electronic Version of the Book Week 4, Day 5 (Oct. 7): 1 Chronicles 4:10

This chapter primarily provides pre-exile lists of families from certain areas, supplementing information from chapter 2. Verses 9 and 10 detour from that objective, however, sharing this prayer. It is interesting to note that Jabez’s name was similar to the word for pain (‘ōṣeb) and, therefore, was a source of ridicule. Most people thought that it generated unpleasant consequences for him and that only changing his name would solve the problem. Clearly, Jabez chose another course of action, and God blessed him for his prayers.

40-Day Prayer Challenge Week 8 Begins on October 31—Printed and Electronic Versions of the Book

The associated topics and Bible passages for Week 8 for the printed and electronic versions of the book are shown below:
Oct. 31: Prayer Releases God’s Power (James 5:16)
Nov. 1: The Key to Great Works (John 14:12-14)
Nov. 2: The Strength to Stand (Ephesians 6:18)
Nov. 3: Prayer Defeats Satan (Luke 22:31-32)
Nov. 4: Prayer Shapes History (Revelation 8:3-5)

Differing Perspectives of Week 8’s Verses—Printed and Electronic Versions of the Book

Here are the links for Week 8’s verses (for the printed and electronic versions of the book) as presented in six alternate versions of the Bible. Hopefully, these reference sources will enhance your understanding of each devotion’s scriptural foundation.
Date Oct. 31 Nov. 1 Nov. 2 Nov. 3 Nov. 4
Passage James 5:16 John 14:12-14 Ephesians 6:18 Luke 22:31-32 Revelation 8:3-5
English Standard (ESV) Link Link Link Link Link
New International (NIV) Link Link Link Link Link
King James (KJV) Link Link Link Link Link
Contemporary English (CEV) Link Link Link Link Link
The Message (MSG) Link Link Link Link Link
New Revised Standard (NRSV) Link Link Link Link Link


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