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5 Ways to Regularly Pray for the Unreached

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If you’re anything like me, you probably struggle to regularly pray for unreached people groups. It is far too easy to get caught up in the busyness of life and go throughout our day without thinking about people on the other side of the world. In fact, until about a year and a half ago, I rarely considered the reality that there were people who had never heard the gospel.

During a conversation with a woman who had served among an unreached ethnic and religious minority in China, my heart was burdened with a desire to see those men and women come to faith in Christ. While a day may come where God calls me to the nations, right now, he has me in Birmingham, Alabama.

During the season that God has me in, I wanted to make it a priority to regularly pray for the unreached. My inclination is to forget the urgency and get caught up in the busyness of life so I built rhythms into my life that would help me remember the unfinished work of gospel proclamation, not only in my city but across the world.

By Yourself

One of the best ways that I have found to remind myself of the work that God is doing around the globe is to listen to the Pray the Word podcast on my morning run. By beginning my day not only in God’s Word but with a reminder of those who have never heard the name of Jesus, a day rarely goes by where I don’t spend time praying for unreached people groups.

Whether you listen during a morning workout, a commute to work, or from your home, this daily, five-minute podcast by David Platt is a great way to make praying for the unreached a normal part of your everyday routine. 

In Your Home

Far too often, our homes lack the type of corporate spiritual vitality that the Bible envisions. This can happen when we are each individually spending time in God’s Word, but aren’t corporately discussing it. Following this year’s Secret Church, we have put together a prayer guide entitled, Let All the Peoples Praise You: 30 Days of Praying for Urgent Needs Among the Nations

Whether you are married with four kids or single and living with roommates, this guide is a great way to set aside a month to spend a few minutes each day with others learning about an unreached people group, and praying for God to call these people to himself.

With Your Small Group

During the lockdown last summer, my small group wanted a way to seek God together even as we were unable to physically gather. We began holding prayer meetings on FaceTime each night and stumbled across the Joshua Project’s Unreached of the Day resource. This simple web page provides background information, ministry obstacles, and prayer points for a new unreached people group each day. 

As small groups begin re-meeting with one another, consider praying for an unreached people group each week. The Unreached of the Day resource is a helpful tool in reminding us of the global scope of God’s gospel.

With Your Local Church

As announced during this year’s Secret Church, Radical has launched a new online tool, Stratus, that we believe can transform the way Christians approach the Great Commission. The tool is not only designed to impact the way churches allocate missions funds: it can also help congregations know how to pray for the unreached.

Whether you are a pastor who wants to cast a compelling vision for why your church should support missionaries who plant churches among the unreached or a member who wants to better understand where your church’s missions dollars are going, Stratus can help provide you with the breadth of information that will allow you to make wise and strategic decisions.

With the Global Church

While the Bible places tremendous weight on the importance and authority of the local church, it also reminds us that the gospel transcends all ethnic, language, and denominational barriers. Groups like Pray for the Unreached create opportunities for college students and young adults from around the world to meet online on a monthly basis and pray for unreached people groups.

Utilizing technology to pray with believers from across the world gives us a glimpse into the beautiful diversity of God’s people that we will experience for eternity in God’s presence. These prayer meetings have reminded me over and over that this gospel is not simply for people that look like me and speak English: this is good news for all people of every ethnicity, language, and nationality. It is truly an incredible opportunity to build relationships with college students from across the world as we pray that God would reveal himself to those who have never heard the name of Christ.

Cole Shiflet is the Growth Strategist for Radical. He is a member of Redeemer Community Church in Birmingham, Alabama. Cole has worked previously with The Gospel Coalition, Rooted Ministry, Anchored Passion, and The Alabama Baptist.
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