Suffering can come from a variety of places. Sometimes it’s a result of poor choices or the selfishness of others. When suffering appears to have no apparent explanation, we often shake our fists at God. God Himself is not to blame. He sent Jesus to suffer in our place as our long-term solution. This will one day be fully realized, when Christ returns, putting an end to suffering for eternity. Regardless of the reason we are suffering, we can cry out to God for His help, grace, and strength to endure. We should also ask the Lord to put a stop to whatever is causing us suffering. God hears us through Christ, and He cares. No matter how He responds to your situation, in this life or the next, He will be faithful to ultimately make all the wrong things right. The following 8 prayers are to be a general guide as you walk through persistent suffering.
1. Then the LORD told him, “I have certainly seen the oppression of My people in Egypt. I have heard their cries of distress because of their harsh slave drivers. Yes, I am aware of their suffering. – Exodus 3:7 NLT
Lord, I trust You see the oppression I am currently experiencing. I believe You have heard my cry of distress and are fully aware of the harsh conditions I am dealing with. Break me free from this! Thank You for the suffering You have endured so I can be heard and received by the King of Heaven Himself! In Christ’s name, I pray, amen.
2. Even when I walk through the darkest valley, I will not be afraid, for You are close beside me. Your rod and Your staff protect and comfort me. – Psalm 23:4 NLT
God, I feel like fear is trying to take me over. If I’m honest, I’m afraid of the darkness of this valley that I’m suffering in right now. I choose to believe the truth that You are close beside me, and right here with me. Never would You leave or forsake me, so I trust You now to protect and comfort me. In Jesus’ name, amen.
3. And He healed every kind of disease and illness. 36 When He saw the crowds, He had compassion on them because they were confused and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd. – Matthew 9:35-36 NLT
Father, thank You for revealing Your heart and will to me through Jesus. I see that You have compassion for me in this state of helpless confusion. I feel lost like a sheep without a shepherd. But I trust beyond my feelings, that Jesus is my Good Shepherd. Stretch out Your hand, have mercy on me, and heal me! Thank You for Your kindness to me. In Jesus name, I pray, amen.
4. These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So, when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world. – 1 Peter 1:7 NLT
Lord Jesus, I choose to give You thanks even though I am facing these hard times and many trials right now. Even though these things are happening and are out of my control, I trust You’re working in me and purifying my faith. When You return, I know this will one day bring You much praise, glory, and honor. In Your name, I pray, amen.
5. Yet what we suffer now is nothing compared to the glory He will reveal to us later. – Romans 8:18 NLT
Jesus, I know You said in this world all of Your followers would have trouble, and I should take heart and continue to trust and follow You. This suffering is so hard, and these things I’m facing seem unending. Nevertheless, I know there will be a day to come, a time when You will wipe away all my tears of sorrow, and there will be no crying or pain anymore. I trust that You will bring me to this place of future glory. In Your name, I pray, amen.
6. So then, since Christ suffered physical pain, you must arm yourselves with the same attitude He had, and be ready to suffer, too. – 1 Peter 4:1 NLT
Lord Jesus, it’s amazing that You became a human like me and know exactly what it’s like to feel and suffer physical pain. If I’m going to suffer, let it be for the sake of Your name alone, and not because I have made foolish decisions in life. Give me the right attitude of heart, to be ready to stand strong for You, because You have always stood strong for me. Amen.
7. Can anything ever separate us from Christ’s love? Does it mean He no longer loves us if we have trouble or calamity, or are persecuted, or hungry, or destitute, or in danger, or threatened with death? – Romans 8:35 NLT
God, I make a conscious decision to stand firm in the truth of Your Word. You are with me in all my troubles, even if I am persecuted for my faith, find myself hungry, in danger, or in a place where I am destitute. Nothing anywhere could ever separate me from the love You’ve given me. Even to the point of being threatened with death, You love me and I’m safe in You! In Jesus’ name, I pray, amen.
8. The apostles left the high council rejoicing that God had counted them worthy to suffer disgrace for the name of Jesus. – Acts 5:41 NLT
Lord Jesus, Your name is most worthy. Teach me what it means to genuinely rejoice in suffering disgrace for the greatness of Your name. Even if it means that I must push through hard times, continue to make Your name famous through my life. I give You all the glory and honor as I choose to live for You. I choose to keep You at the center of my life, no matter what the cost. I pray all these things in Your glorious name, Jesus. Amen.