No matter what your ministry looks like, having a team of intercessors provides essential support—for both you and your ministry. Yet so many leaders don’t have an intercession team. What can that look like and how can you mobilize one? 

Working with intercessors 

working with intercessor team

Get the people who really pray on your intercession team.

Your intercessors are a different group of people than your supporters or your team. You want a special group of intercessors who will be dedicated to praying for you and/or your mission. This doesn’t need to be a huge group of people, but a group of people with a heart for prayer and a track record of faithful prayer. Invite those who really pray. 

Communication from you drives the process.

Don’t recruit an intercessor team and then not communicate with them. Create regular times of communication and put them on your calendar so you don’t forget. Even if it feels like nothing dramatic is happening, that’s okay. Communicate needs, concerns, and hopes anyway. I find email communications to be helpful, especially for people who are not necessarily local.

Be clear on what is confidential.

Rather than saying “everything is confidential” or “nothing is confidential,” highlight the issue of confidentiality at certain points in your communications. Usually that means clarifying your expectations around confidentiality around the sensitive issues. (e.g. do not forward, do not post, do not share, etc.)

Give your intercessors specific things to pray about, and then circle back to provide feedback.

For example, if you asked them to pray for a specific meeting you had, circle back with them afterwards to tell them how it went. People are encouraged by seeing the results of their prayers, even if it didn’t go exactly how they thought or hoped it would.

Ask them what they’re hearing.

Good intercessors aren’t just asking God for things; they’re listening for his voice as well. Ask them periodically if they are hearing from God in response to their prayers, and if so, would they be willing to share it with you. Often people will be more likely to do this in an individual email or conversation with you than they will in a group email or group gathering. 

Remind them that what they are doing is important.

Share your gratitude for their prayers and your awareness that it is making a difference. Let them know you feel supported by them and their contribution is a significant one.  

In-house intercessors

Now that all applies to your intercession team. But you can also cast vision for intercession in your church. Not everyone has the gift of intercession–and you don’t necessarily want everyone on your intercession team, but it’s still good to preach on intercession sometimes just to underscore its importance. You can also reference intercessors to others just so they know that’s a key component of every ministry. Sometimes people with other gifts can forget about intercession rather easily; some gifts are more highly honored publicly than others and intercession is not one of those. Make sure you are publicly highlighting the importance of intercession. 

Photo by Kelly Sikkema on Unsplash