Equipped with Prayers in the Marketplace

This post was written by Tacoi Bell of The Anointed Editorial. To connect with Tacoi, see the information in the bio at the end of this post.

Most people are aware of the five-finger prayer: The idea that each finger on your hand represents a specific group of people you should pray for. Children’s nurseries and Sunday schools across the country more than likely have an image of these prayer points taped to the walls for children to learn and rehearse. It’s easy to remember and encourages children to consider the needs of others, which is something we should all remember to do.

Constructed by Pope Francis, the five prayer points with their finger pairings are:

  1. Thumb – those closest to us; friends and family
  2. Index – those who instruct and direct us; teachers, pastors, doctors, etc.
  3. Middle – those who lead us; governmental bodies and authorities
  4. Ring – those among us who are weak; the sick and the elderly (and I would even add women and children)
  5. Pinky – yourself

A part of our body we heavily rely on serves as a reminder to always pray, and to pray not only for ourselves, but for those we encounter as well as those we will possibly never meet. Prayer is an important part of our lives and cannot be neglected for any reason, lest we become weak in our faith. We have to be equipped with prayer everywhere we go.

As prayer is one of Follower of One’s five daily habits, we are expected to partake in this activity to prepare us for marketplace ministry. Through this lens, I began to wonder what the five-finger prayer might look like in action at work.

An infographic about the five-finger prayer

Thumb – Prayers for Work Friends and Family

We spend the most time with the people we work with. Developing relationships in the workplace comes with the territory — you learn about the lives of coworkers outside of work, their in-office mannerisms, and even how tidy they keep their desk (because we all know someone whose desk is a whirlwind). 

If you stay at a job for a number of years interacting with the same people, you begin to feel more like family than people you simply work with. If not family, then at least really close friends. When you carry the people you work with in your heart in this way, it is easy to pray for them.

Index – Prayers for Trainers in the Workplace

Many big businesses have their systems and operations down to a science. This makes it easy to teach it to others. Work trainers are responsible for doing this, and they honestly deal with so much as they prepare us to effectively do our jobs. 

Before I became a stay-at-home mom and then business owner, I spent a lot of time in customer service. I realized that the trainers poured out everything to train us. However, this was often met with contempt, negative comments, and even many dropping out of the training process. Because I’ve seen this firsthand, I really believe it is a light matter to pray that God fortifies their minds and strengthens them as they train a cohort of new employees.

Middle – Prayers for HR, Executives, Department Presidents, and the CEO/CFO/COO

Praying for the leaders of your company or organization can be difficult, especially if you feel that aspects of performing your job could be better. However, God is no respecter of persons (Romans 2:11), so we shouldn’t be either. What I mean is that it is not our place to determine if one group of people is more worthy of prayer than another. Prayer is not about our personal feelings; it is about partnering with the will of God. Therefore, we can pray for those in Human Resources, corporation executives and presidents, as well as those at the top, such as the CEO or COO.

Ring – Prayers for Elderly, Pregnant, and Medical Leave/Disability Employees

Many businesses are implementing initiatives that prohibit discrimination against elderly and pregnant employees and employees on extended medical leave or disability. With hesitation do I call this subset of the workforce ‘weak’, but I feel that when it relates to the five-finger prayer, the best group they fit into for prayer is those that are sick or weak.

Pinky – Prayers for Your Work Environment 

In order for you to be able to pray for these other groups of people, it is important that you pray for yourself. You can pray over your work space, your position in the company, even pray that the atmosphere is conducive to productivity. Just as you pray that God keeps you when you are out at the supermarket or walking the dog, you can pray that God keeps you in the same way in the workplace.

The five-finger prayer is a great example of how to concern ourselves with others. Praying prayers specific to each group will ensure that all prayer needs are met, thereby partnering with God for accuracy concerning their role and purpose in the workplace. It’s amazing how a part of the body as simple as the hand can teach us so much about prayer. 

Featured photo by Min An on Pexels; in-text image by CatholicLink

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