July 1 – Daily Devotional

July 1 – Daily Devotional

Standin’ in the Need of Prayer


This week’s article was composed last Tuesday morning, prior to my departure for a three-day trip to Houston. I was blessed by visits with several friends, colleagues, and clients on that trip.

What awakened me early that morning was concern for loved ones and friends going through a litany of trials and tribulations. My mind turned to a hymn I often sing during sleepless nights, quietly of course, so as not to awaken my roommate of 58 years—my dear wife Terry.

The hymn verse says, “What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer! Oh, what peace we often forfeit; Oh, what needless pain we bear—all because we do not carry everything to God in prayer!”

Handing over to Jesus my burdens and cares of the moment often suffices to lull me back to sleep. But not always. Early Tuesday morn my mind and heart were particularly drawn to loved ones and friends currently burdened, not necessarily with sins but certainly with pain and grief.

As I tossed and turned in the middle of that night, another spiritual song popped into my mind, described by a secular internet source in these words:

In the midst of life’s trials and tribulations, there exists a timeless practice that has sustained communities, uplifted spirits, and provided solace in moments of despair – prayer. Embedded within the fabric of various cultures and religions, prayer serves as a conduit for connection, reflection, and healing. One expression of this profound spiritual practice is captured in the heartfelt refrain, “Standin’ in the Need of Prayer.” 

Originating from African American spirituals, “Standin’ in the Need of Prayer” encapsulates the essence of vulnerability, humility, and reliance on a higher power. Its simplicity belies its profound significance, resonating deeply with individuals navigating the complexities of life.

Rooted in the historical context of slavery, this spiritual served as a means of endurance, resistance, and hope amidst unimaginable suffering. Through its verses, slaves found solidarity in their shared struggles and strength in their collective faith.

Across generations, the message of “Standin’ in the Need of Prayer” has transcended its historical origins, echoing in the hearts and minds of people from diverse backgrounds. Its poignant lyrics speak to the universal human experience of facing adversity and seeking divine guidance.

Whether whispered in the quiet of one’s home or sung fervently in a place of worship, this spiritual serves as a reminder of the enduring power of faith in times of uncertainty, offering reassurance in adversity and courage in times of doubt.

You, too, may be in need of prayer, for any of many reasons. Jesus knows your griefs, your pains, your burdens, your cares. We are never alone, even and especially when “Standin’ in the Need of Prayer.”

The Good Book says, “Cast all your cares upon Him, for He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7

Sometimes that’s easier said than done.

After writing this article, I thought, “Now maybe I can go back to sleep.” I did. Briefly. But peacefully.

Dr. Gerald B. “Jerry” Kieschnick

Chief Executive Officer | Legacy Deo | GBJK@LegacyDeo.org | www.legacydeo.org | (512) 646-4909

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