A question from our prayer partners and friends:

Below is an example of a prayer request that we receive from heartbroken, desperate parents, which always touches my heart.

Prayer Request: “PLEASE pray for our son and our family. Our son is enslaved to addiction and desperately needs salvation. He has struggled with addiction for over twenty years and it has taken a terrible toll on him and our family. We have done everything within our power and means; nothing has worked. My prayers for him are constant. Addiction is complicated and our son has many issues which would take too long to detail in this request. Please let me assure you that I do not wish to force God or pray in any way that would offend the Heavenly Father. I am just a heart broken, desperate mother that wants most of all her son’s SALVATION. I know that God is ALL POWERFUL and I am powerless. I understand that I must accept His will. My anguish over my son is great! I have a mother’s heart and cannot give up on my son! Our son is now homeless and we do not even know where he is! We do not know what else we can do. We are in fear for his life, safety and ESPECIALLY HIS SOUL! GOD TRULY IS OUR ONLY HOPE! PLEASE PRAY FOR A LIFE CHANGING ENCOUNTER WITH GOD FOR him AND GOD’S MERCY, GRACE AND PEACE FOR OUR FAMILY! Pray for his SALVATION, abstinence and safety. Ask God to work in his life, heart, mind & soul and do whatever is necessary for his SALVATION and deliverance! Our torment is great and after all these years it is hard to have faith and hope! We are suffering and need to feel God’s spirit. Pray that God will reveal to us what He would have us do and please grant us the WISDOM & COURAGE to do only His will. Can you give me anything hope, encouragement, comfort? Thank you for your willingness to prayer for others. May our Lord abundantly bless you! I humbly, ask all of this is in MERCIFUL & MIGHTY NAME OF THE LORD JESUS CHRIST, and except His will in all things!”

My Response:

When a family member becomes ensnared in addictions, it is not an individual problem…it is a family problem. A family crisis may become your School of Prayer, and it may be the most difficult of all. To pray effectually, you have to allow the Word of God to divide soul and spirit. This is the separation of your emotions (the mother/father’s love) from your faith, which is the victory that overcomes the world. Here is where you, the mother or father, will find it imperative to yield to the constant ministry of transformation by the Holy Spirit. He is the Divine Intercessor who helps you pray when you don’t know how or what to pray. (Romans 8:26-28.) You may wrestle with guilt, self-condemnation and questions that are heart-wrenching, but God will never fail you or leave you without support.

When our son was in his junior year of high school, we were one of the families entrapped by the raging drug culture which rocked society in the 1970’s. The church world was not ready to address the demoralizing effects of drug addictions. We pursued help from many sources, but over time it became evident that we needed help that only comes from the Throne Room of Heaven. For a few months I withdrew from friends and neighbors to inquire of the Lord according to Psalm 27. I did not hesitate to pour out my soul before my Father-God just as Hannah of the Old Testament. But I learned that I could say to my soul: Why are you cast down? Hope in God who loves David and has plans for him that you do not yet know. You can’t walk his journey for him. My Spirit is hovering over him wherever he goes.

The Holy Spirit taught me several lessons…sometimes easy to learn, but not so easy to process. BUT GOD…He has sent a divine Helper…the Holy Spirit.

  • Search the scriptures for God’s plans for children. (Isa 54:13; Acts 16:31)

  • Forgive your child and remember that God even uses the evil of this world to accommodate itself to His plan. (Romans 8:28)

  • Speak your faith (all is well) in the face of painful circumstances. (Proverbs 18:21 and Proverbs 21:23)

  • Make a decision to praise and thank God according to Psalm 139 and Psalm 8.

  • Don’t be moved by a positive or negative change. You will develop patience as you “count it all joy” and your emotions will not be tossed around by every wind that comes. (James 1)

  • Renew your mind to God’s Word which never changes rather than focusing on circumstances which are ever changing.

  • Bring your thoughts into obedience to God’s Word and DO NOT focus on the problem.

  • Do not discuss the problem with everyone. This opens the door for the opinion of others and you will learn the full meaning of “job’s Comforters first hand. God will send encouragers to you in His timing.

  • Choose carefully those you ask to pray. The prayer of agreement is powerful when “two of you agree here on earth concerning anything you ask.”

  • Do not tell God how to answer your prayer…let God arise and He will be glorified!

David and I share “Our Family’s Story” in Prayers That Avail Much for Your Family, which is available on our website.