I was 20 when I got engaged and threw myself into getting ready for our wedding. I booked the church and met with the caterer. I filled out my registry and ordered my dress. In all those preparations, and even into the years to come, it never occurred to me that I should pray for my husband.
Praying I thought was something you did defensively. It was what you pulled out when something went wrong. And prayer was for older women who, well, had time to pray and maybe couldn’t do much else but pray.
Ha! I had no clue! No clue that the biggest force field around my husband was prayer. No clue that praying can be and should be proactive. No clue that not praying was laying aside the biggest weapon for my husband. No clue that prayer is one of the biggest gifts I can give my husband.
Now I know. And I really want you to know too, so you don’t waste as much time as I did not praying.
When you got married, you made a covenant before God, and he joined the two of you together (Matthew 19:6). In God’s eyes, you are one. What’s done by one, strongly affects the other. So when you pray, you’ve got an inside track. You have a spiritual “in” that gives you leverage to pray with an authority that others don’t have. Use it!
The hardest part about being a praying wife, says author Stormie Omartian, is keeping a pure heart. Praying for your husband has to start by praying for his wife—you.
One day I was looking for a little sympathy from God. “But God,” I complained about my husband. “Didn’t you see what he did?”
God wasn’t impressed. “He’s my son,” he told me. And I knew the grudge I was holding against my husband was just as wrong as the so-called unfair treatment I thought I’d received.
“The Lord is far from the wicked,” says Proverbs 15:29, “but he hears the prayer of the righteous.” Any traces of unforgiveness or resentment tucked away in your heart close God’s ears to your prayers.
A Specific Prayer That Covers All
When it comes to what to pray for your husband, you can forget the “God, change him!” prayers. They typically don’t work. Mostly because you’ve got your agenda in mind rather than God’s.
Sometimes I find myself trying to twist God’s arm to see things from my point of view. Usually he waits until I surrender, take a step back and understand that he works his image in my husband, not what I think he should look like.
Lining up your prayers with Scripture means you can pray with confidence and authority. You know you’re praying the will of God if you pray his Word. So I wove Scripture into the prayers below and included the references for you.
Actions • Dreams and Calling • Protection • Health • Struggles • Relationships with God and others
Lord, I pray _______ would love you with all his heart, mind, soul, and strength (Matt. 22:37; Mark 12:30) and really know you (Eph 1:17). Give him godly friends who encourage his faith, and I pray he’d lose interest in people and things that disregard you. Help him discover the joy of meditating on the truth in your Word day in and day out (Psalm 1).
Your Word says you forgive all our sins and heal all our diseases (Psalm 103:2-3). Heal _______ from hurts past and present, and empower him to forgive and hold debt-free those who’ve done him wrong. Make him strong and give him good health (1 John 3:2). I pray he’d care for his body like the gift it is.
Protect ______ by the power of your great name, physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually. Protect our marriage and our family, because without your protection unity just isn’t possible (John 17:11). Without you we really can do nothing (John 15:5)! I pray he’d be the same kind of father to our kids that you are to him.
Sometimes times he struggles with ________. Dear God, remind him that when he is weak, you are strong (2 Cor. 12:9). You’ve designed him for victory (1 John 5:4). I pray he’d rely on the power that comes through what your Spirit does (Zech 4:6) through faith and by grace. Give him power to understand how wide, long, high and deep your love is (Eph. 3:16-19) and the courage to receive that love.
I pray your favor would be on _________ in his work (Psalm 90:17). Affirm his work and give him deep satisfaction in it. Pour your desires into his heart, and I pray he’d follow you wherever you lead (Psalm 25:4; 32:8).
Thank you for listening to my prayers. I’m coming as your daughter, one who has your authority to pray in Jesus’s name! Thank you that I can pray with confidence, knowing you’ll answer and are near to those who pray (Hebrews 4:16; Psalm 145:18).
Personalizing psalms is also a powerful way to pray for your husband. I especially like Psalm 1, Psalm 37:1-7, Psalm 40, and Psalm 127.
Don’t underestimate your power to pray!
*If you want to pray specific prayers for specific situations and aspects of your husband’s life, I can’t recommend a resource more than The Power of a Praying Wife. Good stuff!
© Carol Garborg, 2021