Let’s be honest: our prayers for long-distance relationships often focus more on ourselves than they focus on God.
We pour out woes, worries, and wishes, and our loving Father cares for us in these things. Yet how often do our prayers express worship?
I confess I’m convicted by Hosea 7:14: “They do not cry to me from the heart, but they wail upon their beds.”
I’ve spent many nights crying and crying out on my bed. Many nights, these cries have been sincere, and I’ve felt God’s comfort.
But reflecting on other nights, I have to wonder: Were my prayers for my long-distance relationship worship, or inconsolable wails?
There’s a healthy place for lament in the Christian life — especially prayers of lament in a long-distance relationship. You should cast “all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you” (1 Peter 5:7). We need to be honest with God even when we’re upset because he knows our hearts anyway, and he loves us.
Yet our lament must have an aim. Our wrestling must lead us to worship. The worship may be tear-stained, throat-choked, and tight-fisted, but it needs to be grounded in humble wonder of our incomprehensible God.
Centering Prayers on God
How can we center our prayers for long-distance relationships on God? Countless ways exist, but I think it’s helpful to think about what preoccupies us and then consider how to turn those desires toward worship.
In our long-distance relationship, I would say that my…
- Number one woe was missing my boyfriend
- Number one worry was the future of our relationship
- Number one wish was to be with my boyfriend
Based on these concerns, here are three God-centered prayers for long-distance relationships.
A Prayer for When You Miss Your Long-Distance Boyfriend
Lord, you know I miss him so much. You know that his absence makes my heart ache.
I don’t understand why we are separated right now, but I trust that your plans are good, God.
Your thoughts and ways are much higher, much wiser, much better than mine. Help me believe that.
God, you are completely worthy of all our love and attention. You’re the creator of relationships, and your intention is that all these emotions would lead me back to you.
I thank you, Jesus, that I never need to miss your presence. You are always with me — how incredibly wonderful and loving you are! That you would desire to dwell with me in my misery is a kindness I cannot repay.
Because, God, I confess that I often love my boyfriend more than I love you. I long for his presence more than yours. Would you restructure my heart’s affections?
I need you, Jesus. Thank you for being present when I want to push you away.
A Prayer for When You Worry About the Future of Your Relationship
Hey God, what are your thoughts on our relationship? Is it healthy? Is it good? Will it last?
I kind of wish you could leave me a message in the sky or the snow or the sand — anything to let me know what I’m supposed to do next, to reveal if it’s wise for us to continue moving forward.
I long for words from you, God, yet you have already given me words. The Word. I admit I don’t always treasure the wisdom of your holy book. I don’t want to do any digging, waiting, or searching.
That’s the beauty of your design, though, isn’t it? I can’t find answers until I’ve found you, the Word become flesh. Thank you for allowing us to know you, God, and for guiding us between these pages with your presence.
Your divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness. All I need to know is that you are in control. Please help me seek a deeper knowledge of you every day, Jesus, and allow this knowledge to give me peace or uncertainty — whatever I require — about our relationship.
(2 Peter 1:3)
A Prayer for When You Wish You Were with Your Boyfriend
Lord, I am impatient. I don’t want to wait any longer to see him.
Help me trust your timing, God. What are you teaching me now about who you are? You are not slow in keeping your promises, God — you are patient with us.
I am glad that you are not hasty in your words or actions — your every move is perfectly planned, Lord. You are not restless because you are the definition of rest.
So, help me rest in the reality of eternity with you. Grow my capacity to wait for good things, to be content with my circumstances. You are all I need in this moment.
Help my delight in the hope of glory be greater than my delight in the hope of seeing my boyfriend. Restore to me the joy of salvation and grant me a willing spirit to sustain me.
(2 Peter 3:9, Psalm 51:12)