Why I Need A Prayer List

I have a prayer list I keep in the “Notes” app on my iPhone. My prayer list is a precious commodity and a valuable tool for my ministry to the people of my church and my region.

Here’s why I need a prayer list and why I think you need one as well.

First, my prayer list frees my mind to spend time in prayer rather than spending time trying to remember those for whom I should pray. 

By the way, my prayer list is very simple. I simply list the names of families, their need, and the date I placed them on the list. I add new people at the bottom of the list. Sometimes, I list people together under a category. For example, I have a paragraph of people for whom I am praying for their salvation. I also have a cancer paragraph among several others where I group needs.

Second, I need a prayer list to keep me on track. It’s easy for me to get distracted. My prayer list prompts me to pray, to pray specifically, and to pray for the needs of specific people.

Third, I need a prayer list so that when someone asks me to pray, I actually pray. I fear that Christians are too quick to say, “I will pray for you” and too slow to pray. My prayer list helps me keep my promises. When someone asks me to pray, I write down their name and need. Sometimes it goes directly to my phone and sometimes I take it from my written notes.

Fourth, I need a prayer list to remember people who have been on the list for a long time but whose needs continue. While people’s needs don’t change or go away, we can get so caught up in the newest needs that we forget those whose needs are still fresh with them. My prayer list makes me continue to pray for those needs.

Finally, my prayer list is good for me because it keeps me in close touch with the Father. Of all the reasons I pray, this is most important. When I pray over my list (or without it), I am coming into the presence of the eternal God who loves me and gave His Son for me.

Nothing is more important.

You can receive all of my daily devotionals by signing up at waylonbailey.com or in the box below.



  1. Lonnie Wascom
    Apr 04, 2018

    Yep, the dullest pencil on paper is far sharper than my memory! Actually, I don’t use paper and pencil anymore. Like you, I have “an app for that.” Great post. Great reminder.

  2. Ray Swift
    Apr 04, 2018

    Thank you Dr. Bailey. Always encouraging me to keep doing what we believers/ministers are supposed to. Especially in the area of prayer this is helpful.

  3. Tammy Snyder
    Apr 04, 2018

    Thank you, Waylon, for your daily counsel and encouragement. I try to follow my precious daddy’s example when it comes to praying for people who ask you to pray for them. He would stop right there, wherever he was, put his arm around the person and go into the presence of the Savior with the person’s need. What a blessing to have his example all my life and your continued example now! Praise the Lord!!!
    Tammy Snyder

  4. Carolyn Caylor
    Apr 05, 2018

    What a great idea! I don’t always have my notebook nearby but seldom am without my phone. Thank you!

    • Waylon
      Apr 05, 2018

      Thanks to all of you for your encouragement. I appreciate all who read and comment.

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About Waylon

I am the senior pastor of First Baptist Church, Covington, Louisiana, a position that I have held since 1989.

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May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer. — Psalm 19:14 (NIV)