I love to pray but don’t always remember who and what to pray for.
I have a small group of people who are often on my mind, so I pray for them regularly, but many more people only occasionally come to mind during prayer.
To help, I keep a list of names of people to pray for, but that list doesn’t tell me what to pray for.
I recently talked with my friend Ted Horton when he casually mentioned a unique way of keeping track of prayers.
Ted currently directs Promise Ministries International, a prison correspondence ministry that began in 1981. He told me that in the world of prison, there are many conflicting religious messages, and two big issues are Lordship Salvation and those who deny eternal security, so he has been emphasizing a clear gospel message to prisoners.
I asked Ted questions about his prayer method and thought you might benefit from the answers.
1. Ted, you have an interesting way of keeping track of prayer requests. What do you do, and when did you first get the idea?
I keep track of my prayer requests on 3x5 index cards organized in an index card box. I got the idea about six years ago from a book that mentioned this method. The name currently escapes me. I have a card for every person and ministry that I pray for. The cards begin in a fairly generic fashion with basic needs written on them. When I learn about a need that a person has, I can list it specifically on that person’s card with a date.
2. How do you keep your cards updated?
I do this in a couple of ways. As I am in my prayer time and going through the cards, I may see a request that has been answered in some way, and I update the card. Sometimes the person who requested the prayer may give an update, and I notate the card. Also, if neither of those things has happened, it gives me the occasion to reach out to the person to see how they are and what became of their need.
3. How has using this system blessed you?
This system has blessed me in that I can more specifically see how the Lord has moved in the believer's life and the needs they have expressed. It also allows me to stay in touch with brothers and sisters in Christ on a steadier basis and encourage them.
Thought for the day: Keeping track of your prayers can help you keep track of God’s faithfulness in answering them.