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Last Words of Jesus.

Updated: Apr 3

Good Friday Prayer Guide

1) Extend forgiveness.

In the midst of his execution, Jesus prayed for those whose very actions would cause not only his pain but also his death: “Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” (Luke 23:34)


Grown-ups ask your child: When is it the hardest for you to forgive someone?


Pray for those who have hurt you or offended you and ask for the grace to forgive and to keep on forgiving, as often and as long as necessary.




2) Pray for others to draw closer to God.

To the repentant thief who was crucified next to him, Jesus said, “Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.” (Luke 23:43) How fitting that even as he was dying, Jesus was ushering someone into eternal life.


Grown-ups ask your child: Why is it so important that we ask Jesus to come into our lives?


Take a few moments to pray for those among your family and friends who have not yet experienced the fullness of life that is found through faith in Jesus.



3) Pray for those in need.

John’s Gospel records Jesus taking the time and effort—from the cross—to place his mother, Mary, into the care of his faithful follower, John: “Woman, here is your son.” (John 19:26) That striking and intimate detail reminds us that Jesus cares for our practical wellbeing.


Grown ups ask your child:  How has Jesus shown you and our family this same kind of love?


Pray for the practical needs of those around you, but also ask for ways in which you could help practically meet those needs.



4) Pray for the lonely.

When Jesus cried out from the cross, “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me,” (Mark 15:34) he was echoing the abandonment and desperation of Psalm 22 (maybe take a moment to read this Psalm).


Grown ups ask your child:  Have you ever felt lonely, tell me about it.  Do you know of anyone else that may be lonely?


That loneliness afflicts many in our community, church, and family. Spend some time praying for the lonely people around you and ask Jesus to make himself known to them and be especially close to them.



5) Pray for those in pain.

Jesus experienced extreme dehydration while on the cross. His thirst would have been excruciating (that word itself comes from the horrors of crucifixion: ex cruciatus, or out of the cross). So he cried out, “I am thirsty!” (John 19:28)


Grown ups ask your child: Can you think of someone who may be in pain and in need of our prayers now?


Let Jesus’ shortest saying from the cross prompt prayers for those who are in pain—those in the hospital, in rehab, in sick beds, or undergoing treatment.



6) Place yourself in God’s hands.

Jesus quoted another psalm (Psalm 31:5) when he prayed, “Father, into Your hands I commit My spirit.” (Luke 23:46) There is no better time than Good Friday to consciously and reverently place yourself in God’s hands—to surrender anew your spirit, your life, your concerns, your future, your hopes, and dreams into his loving and omnipotent care. Go ahead and do that now. 


Grown ups ask your child: Can you close your eyes and imagine with me… picture God’s big and loving hands being held wide open for you to drop anything in there that you need to.

Maybe what you need or want to put in there is your heart? Maybe it’s something you’re worried about, or even something you’re looking forward to? Let’s give it a try. 


7) Give thanks for Jesus’ sacrifice.

When Jesus spoke his last words on the cross, “It is finished,” (John 19:30) Matthew records, “At that moment the curtain of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom.” (Matthew 27:51) This curtain was a constant reminder that sin makes humanity unfit for the presence of God; separating Holy from unholy. Jesus, through his death, removed the barrier between God and us, and now we can come before him with confidence and boldness. (Hebrews 4:14-16) The work is done. You have nothing to prove. You have nothing to earn. No “try and do,” only “take and be.” This is truly a good Friday! Give thanks.


Grown ups ask your child: Jesus gave up his life on the cross because he loves you… can you think of anything that would make him stop loving you? Maybe if you tell a fib? (Say: No Way!) When you break something? (No Way!) When you are grumpy? (No Way, Let’s go take communion, remember this, and be thankful!)


When you’re ready, come forward to receive communion. 




MY KING FOREVER - Josh Baldwin

AT THE CROSS - Hillsong Worship


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