19 Lent Prayers

19 Lent Prayers

Lent prayers can be used to mark the time Jesus spent praying and fasting in the wilderness, before he started his ministry. Beginning on Ash Wednesday and ending on Holy Saturday, Lent is a well-known time for fasting, but there’s a deeper purpose beyond simply giving up unhealthy habits (sometimes called making Lent Promises). Lent is an important time for Christians all around the world to open our hearts to God in prayer and spiritual reflection so we hope you enjoy these prayer resources. Lenten prayer is a special opportunity to focus on God and draw close to Him.

Lent prayers for 2024

This season of Lent, why not ask God to give you ‘the mind of Christ’ (1 Corinthians 2:16), using these short prayers for Lent to step into a deeper relationship with Him. When we understand God’s plan for the world, we share His heart, and align ourselves with His purpose. Use these prayers of intercession for Lent to help you find the deep joy of intimacy with Christ.

Mario and Neisa pray with their family

A prayer for Ash Wednesday

At the start of Lent is Ash Wednesday, a day when Christians around the world remember our humanity – that we are sinful, need repentance, and yet can accept salvation through Christ. In many churches, the 40 days of Lent prayer begins when this is symbolised with a cross marked on the forehead in ash.

O God, I am made of dust–deeply human, but created for relationship with you. At the beginning of Lent, I admit that I am sinful, and often fall away. You are a God of holiness, love, and justice. Despite my failings, in generous mercy and kindness you draw me near. Thank you that you planned a way that I might return to you. Draw me into a deeper understanding of your plan for salvation this Lenten Season, that I may truly know you. Amen

A prayer for the start of Lent

At the beginning of Lent, I remember how Jesus withdrew from his friends and followers, to spend time with you. Heavenly Father, I also take time away from life’s busyness to refocus my heart and spirit. I choose to recentre my life on your Word, your teachings, and ask your Holy Spirit to lead and guide me, filling me with the hope that is only found in Christ. Thank you for the rich depth of relationship I can have with you. Amen

Lent prayers for change

Lent prayers for intercession invite us to pray for the needs of the world and ask that God’s kingdom will come on earth.

Heavenly Father, thank you that in every circumstance you draw me near. When I pray for things to change, I remember that you long for righteousness and justice. When I feel heartbroken about those living in fear and conflict, I remember that you are the Prince of Peace. When I am overwhelmed with grief, I remember how Jesus wept when his friend Lazarus died. When I am afraid, I remember that you broke the chains of death. May I live every day with the true hope that is found in Christ. Amen

Lent prayers about caring for others

Lord God, help me reach out to others, seeing their needs and caring for them. May I love as you love: extravagantly and indiscriminately. May I care as you do: without expectation and without counting the cost. Lead me to a deeper understanding of your compassionate care for others – especially where they are suffering in situations I don’t know or understand. Lord, give me the mind of Christ. Amen

Lent prayer about caring for others

Lent prayers about waiting

This prayer is based on Tim Keller’s advice that Christians are to wait patiently, perspectively, obediently, God-centrically, and joyfully based on Habbakuk 2:1-4. In our daily prayer, we move into alignment with the ways of God, and the needs of the world, remembering Habbakuk’s encouragement that ‘the righteous person will live by his faithfulness.’ 1

Father God, in this time of Lent, I wait patiently and expectantly for you. I believe that – as I read in your Word – you are dynamically engaged in this world, and care about every aspect. And so I pray ‘Lord, come’ – to your people, and to your world. I place you at the centre of my life and I wait. I wait out of obedience, submitting my life, hopes, and dreams before your holy throne. I wait joyfully, for we know you are the source of life and hope. Let your kingdom come. Amen

A prayer for the impossible

This prayer for Lent is inspired by the words of the Dutch Christian Connie ten Boom, whose family helped many Jewish people escape from the Nazis during World War II, by hiding them in their home. Upon being caught and arrested, she was sent to Ravensbrück concentration camp where she found and shared hope in God, later recounted in the book The Hiding Place.

God Almighty, I thank you that in prayer I leave a world of not being able to do something, and enter your realm, where everything is possible – nothing is beyond your power or your reach. Nothing is too great for your almighty power, and nothing too small for your love. I thank you for being God of the impossible. Amen 2

Prayer for the impossible

A prayer for strength and protection

This Lent prayer comes from Alfred the Great in the 9th Century. Alfred the Great fought the Vikings and saw their leader converted to Christianity. He also championed education, and ruled that primary education in Britain could – for the first time – teach in English as opposed to Latin. This greatly improved literacy and the opportunities of children.

Lord God Almighty, shaper and ruler of all creatures, we pray for your great mercy, that you guide us towards you, for we cannot find our way. 

And guide us to your will, to the need of our soul, for we cannot do it ourselves. And make our mind steadfast in your will and aware of our soul’s need. 

Strengthen us against the temptations of the devil, and remove from us all lust and every unrighteousness, and shield us against our foes, seen and unseen. 

Teach us to do your will, that we may inwardly love you before all things with a pure mind. For you are our maker and our redeemer, our help, our comfort, our trust, our hope; praise and glory be to you now and forever. Amen 3

Lent prayer for strength and protection

A prayer to know God’s grace this Lenten season

This Lent prayer is shared by the Methodists, and invites us to re-commit ourselves to God’s work here on the earth.

God of mercy and love let us serve you in our world. 
We pray for desert people, 
who live in a dry, parched land 
who lack water 
who travel constantly 
so that they might live. 
Give them living water. 
Let the deserts bloom into flower. 
We pray that those who work on climate change 
may find solutions so that the erosion of soil may be halted or reversed. 
We pray that water and other vital supplies might not be used as a weapon of 
war in countries where resources are scarce. Amen 4

A prayer for the true fast

This Lenten prayer is inspired by Isaiah 58:6-7, which calls for a ‘true fast’ as the kind of fast God seeks from us. In Isaiah, we are called to worship by partnering with God in His work of redemption, of bringing justice and righteousness to the earth. The good news is that He also anoints and equips us for the task.

Father of all, I wish to bring you the praise that you deserve. Help me loosen the chains of injustice, release the oppressed and bring God’s grace and mercy to those in need. Help me share all that you have provided with others, especially the most vulnerable. I am sorry for the times I have forgotten your call to true praise and found myself caught up in the trappings of religion. I commit once again to practicing my faith outwardly as well as inwardly. Lord, anoint me to build your kingdom. Amen

Lent Prayers for desert people

This Lent prayer is shared by the Methodists, and invites us to re-commit ourselves to God’s work here on the earth.
God of mercy and love let us serve you in our world.

We pray for desert people,
who live in a dry, parched land
who lack water
who travel constantly
so that they might live.
Give them living water.
Let the deserts bloom into flower.
We pray that those who work on climate change
may find solutions so that the erosion of soil may be halted or reversed.
We pray that water and other vital supplies might not be used as a weapon
of war in countries where resources are scarce. Amen

A morning prayer for guidance

Our Father, today please lead me in all I say and do. Whenever I fall out of step from your will, draw me back. Lead me to repent and try again. Guide me with the light of your love now and always. Amen

Children pray together

Lent prayers for those who have no peace

As part of our Lent Prayers for intercession, we focus on those caught up in violence and despair, using this Lent prayer from the Methodist church:

We pray for those who have no peace –  
for those who are troubled and torn apart by lack of self esteem 
for those who torment and victimise the vulnerable. 
We pray for men and women affected by violence in the home 
and for those who live by violence. 
We pray for those who are trafficked 
and for those who organise and profit from selling other humans. 
May they learn of your love 
and somehow come to newness of life 
even in the midst of despair. Amen 5

Prayer for Palm Sunday

As we approach Palm Sunday, the desert devotions of Lent prayers move into public praise. As Jesus entered Jerusalem, the crowds welcomed him with palm branches and triumph. Lent prayer reminds us to hold all these things in balance; God of the invisible and visible, the known and unknown, prepared in the quiet for the ultimate act of redemption. As Tim Keller writes, ‘Palm Sunday is an incredible parable of the life-long mismatch of what we think we need and what God has provided.” 6

Lord, I thank you that in your triumphant entry to Jerusalem, we see a glimpse of the divine king of the universe welcomed and treated with honour. We pray for hearts all over the world to turn to you, and for a renewed spiritual hunger that sees many come to welcome you as their personal Saviour and Lord. Amen

A prayer for Holy Wednesday

As Lent begins to draw to a close, we focus our prayers and reflections on Jesus Christ’s death and resurrection. On Holy Wednesday, Christians around the world use Lent prayer to recall the encroaching darkness, the abandonment of Jesus by his disciples, and the pain and sorrow of Good Friday. Lenten Promises also remind us that light will overcome darkness. In these Lent prayers 2024, we invite you to pray over situations where the light of Christ is desperately needed.

God Almighty, when the darkness descends, may we think of your ascent into glory. May we remember how light overcame darkness. We bring before you situations that need your light and your salvation. May we remember that right now we may only know ‘in part’, but one day we will ‘know in full’ (1 Corinthians 13:12). We want to live like Jesus, who, as the darkness grew around him, remembered his purpose, and did not set aside his heart of love. Come, Lord! Meet us in the limits of our understanding and bring your light and healing to the darkest, most difficult situations in our world today. Amen 

 A prayer for Maundy Thursday

Maundy Thursday sees tension between the intimacy of the disciples’ community and the betrayal that Jesus faced. At the final supper, he washed the feet of those closest to him in an unparalleled act of service. Shortly afterwards, one of those 12 disciples betrayed him, and set into motion the events of the crucifixion.

Father God, this Maundy Thursday we reflect afresh on the sacrifice you made for each of us. You faced such betrayal and suffering so that we could be reunited with our Heavenly Father and know perfect peace and freedom. Thank you for being the sacrificial lamb. Amen.

A prayer for Good Friday

Compassion UK CEO Justin Dowds describes Good Friday as “the ultimate demonstration of the depth and richness of Christ’s love for us.” It comes shortly after Jesus had called his disciples to a fuller expression of love “to love each other as I have loved you” (John 13:34). With this in mind, we join in this Lenten Prayer, from the Sarun Primer (Salisbury Prayerbook) in 1538.

O blessed Jesus, most mighty lion, King immortal and most victorious, remember the sorrow that you suffered when all your powers of heart and body failed you utterly, and when you bowed your head and said, “It is finished.” Remembering your anguish and sorrow, blessed Jesus, have mercy on me in my last hour. Amen 7

A prayer for Holy Saturday

Lent officially finishes on Holy Saturday. It is a day that Pete Greig describes as ‘when heaven is silent,” 8 the day that comes in between the pain and loss of Christ’s death, and the miracle of Easter Sunday. It is not a day to avoid prayer. Here is a Lent prayer for Holy Saturday, written by theologian Alan E. Lewis:

Hear our prayer for a world still living an Easter Saturday existence: oppressed and lonely, guilty of godlessness and convinced of godforsakenness. Be still tomorrow the God you are today, and yesterday already were: God with us in the grave, but pulling thus the sting of death and promising in your final kingdom and even greater victory of abundant grace and life over the magnitude of sin and death. And for your blessed burial, into which we were baptised, may you be glorified for evermore. 9

A prayer for Easter Sunday

The journey of Lent prayers brings even greater focus and celebration to the miracles of Easter Sunday. This prayer is inspired by a sermon preached by Charles Spurgeon on Easter Day, 1873, celebrating the new life found in Christ:

Heavenly Father, today we join with the angels and all the spirits in heaven celebrating the news that Christ lives. He lives, and he is willing to receive each of us. May we live every day with this glad news in our hearts, by the power of the Holy Spirit. May we share it with others, that they may too be moved from despair to hope. May we encourage each other and all those we meet with the hope that we find in Christ. Amen 

Lent prayers from children

During Lent, children in the Compassion programme have the opportunity to learn about Jesus through special events and teaching. They read Bible verses and scripture, learn to pray and take part in special celebrations. Those who sponsor a child with Compassion often find the child they support sends them Easter prayers or encouraging Bible verses.

This prayer is inspired by Raya, from Indonesia. Raya carried a torch in her community’s annual Easter dawn relay. Together with her family and friends from the project, she helped bring light to her community as part of their Easter celebrations. Hermin, the director at the project she attends, says “We want to teach the children that Jesus has risen, and He is no longer buried in the grave, He is resurrected and lives. This prayer is inspired by Raya.

Thank you, that Easter means Jesus has risen from the dead; He wins over death. He died because He loves us. He is risen for us and for those who believe in Him. Amen. – Raya, 9, from Indonesia.

In El Salvador, Lent and Holy Week offer opportunities for Compassion’s church partners to share the Gospel message. Easter camps and other special events are often held to offer children and young people the opportunity to know that God loves them, left the cross empty and is always with them. This prayer is inspired by Steeb, aged 17:

Thank you Jesus, that your resurrection gives me a life of opportunity: the faith that I have in you makes my life easier because if you died for me, you can do anything for me. This gives me the certainty that when something bad happens, you will be by my side helping me. Amen. – Steeb, 17, El Salvador

Steeb's prayer for Good Friday and Easter

Our final prayer for this Lenten journey is inspired by Jacqueline, age 6, who lives in El Salvador.

Lord, at Easter, we celebrate that Jesus accomplished His promise when He gave his life for us. Thank you that this means God does everything by love. Amen — Jacqueline, 6, El Salvador

Lenten Prayers from Children


  1. Dr Timothy Keller’s sermon “Waiting and Living By Faith,” preached at Redeemer Presbyterian Church on May 10th, 2009 as part of the series “Living by Faith in Troubled Times” https://gospelinlife.com/sermon/waiting-and-living-by-faith/
  2. Corrie ten Boom (2008). “I Stand at the Door and Knock: Meditations by the Author of The Hiding Place”, p.63, Zondervan
  3. This modified prayer comes from Prayers of the Middle Ages, edited by J. Manning Potts, 1954. (New Ancient Collects, #264) https://acollectionofprayers.com/2018/11/14/for-strength-and-guidance/
  4. https://www.methodist.org.uk/our-faith/worship/lent-and-easter/prayers-for-lent-and-easter/
  5. https://www.methodist.org.uk/our-faith/worship/lent-and-easter/prayers-for-lent-and-easter/
  6. Quote from a sermon Tim Keller preached on 18th March, 2012 entitled “Into Jerusalem.” 
  7. Sarum Primer, 1538 https://www.oursanctuary.net/sarum.html
  8. Pete Greig, God on Mute, (Colorado Springs: David C. Cook, 2020)
  9. Alan E. Lewis, (1944-1994) quoted in God on Mute 
Joshua Sachay

Words by Joshua Sachay


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