Pray for Media and Entertainment 2022

Friend Me? 

(by Alison Gilchrist) 

A friend in need is a friend indeed and the need is increasing. 

My intercessor is my friend
    as my eyes pour out tears to God;
on behalf of a man he pleads with God
    as one pleads for a friend.

(Job 16:20-21 NIV) 

If you study the book of Genesis, you will discover that the first problem in our world wasn’t sin but solitude. God says it’s not good for us to be alone (Genesis 2:18). From the very beginning God has wanted us to experience healthy friendships and relationships. 

However, our contemporary world is facing a growing, yet mostly unrecognised issue: friendship poverty

Recently published research [1] showed those with NO FRIENDS has quadrupled since 1990. 49% of people now report having fewer than 3 close friends, which is an almost twofold percentage increase in the same period. The Clergy Journal [2] reported that 60% of men over 30 cannot identify a single person they would call a close friend. 

This is a concern in the light of the growing evidence of our need for friends. In the Journal of Happiness Studies [3], researchers looked at what distinguished quite happy people from less happy people. One factor consistently separated those two groups. It’s not about how much money you have; it’s not about your health, security, attractiveness, IQ, or career success. What distinguishes consistently happy people from less happy people is the presence of rich, deep, joy-producing, life-changing, meaningful relationships. 

Social researcher Robert Putnam writes [4]: ‘The single most common finding from a half-century’s research on life satisfaction… is that happiness is best predicted by the breadth and depth of one’s social connections.’ 

What is concerning is [that] most people give little thought or time to friendships, assuming they just happen somehow, and most folk have little understanding of the implication of friendlessness. But loneliness has a toxic effect on our minds and bodies, as well as our souls, with researchers finding isolation is as harmful as smoking 15 cigarettes a day [5], and it impacts both our quality of life and our longevity. 

In the light of this GFS Perth is catalysing a #friendshiprevolution, and as our worldwide motto is “Bear one another’s burdens, and in this way you will fulfill the law of Christ” (Galatians 6:2 NRSV), we see this as a calling to enable God’s grace in this growing need. We are the local expression of a pioneer organisation established in 1875 in the UK, in 1888 in Western Australia; part of a now almost century and half old global community of people belonging to many Christian traditions. One of GFS Perth’s core values is “WE ARE PRAYERFUL: Our faith is central to all we do, so praying for our friends and ministry is a key aspect of our journey.” 

Friendship does not figure prominently in the theological world, since friendship is typically relegated to the secular realm, showing up more in films, and on TV and social media than in church but …. did you ever notice that Christians were called “friends” before they were called Christians? In the New Testament it was in Antioch that the disciples were first called Christians. It was Jesus who said, “I have called you friends.” [cf. John 15:15] He spent time with his friends and disciples during his time living on earth. He, like other Rabbis of the day, shared life with them and grew to know and understand them. He walked alongside them in ministry. He shared meals with them and enjoyed their fellowship. Jesus prayed for his friends. He prayed earnestly and often for them. He even approached the Father before the cross and prayed for them (John 17). 

Jesus gave everything to His friends, including His knowledge of God, and ultimately His own life. Jesus is our model for friendship because He loved without limits, and He makes it possible for us to live a life of friendship because we have been transformed by everything He shared with us. 

Friendship is God’s gracious gift to us, and the world needs it more now than ever. So, today we are calling you to join us praying for a #friendshiprevolution 

A Prayer 

(Ecclesiastes quote from NLT Bible) 

Lord, thank you that you knew we would need friendships, 
that you created us to be in community. 
We pray for those who are lonely and in need of a friend. 
You say in Ecclesiastes 4:10 
“If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. 
But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.” 
Would you please help those with whom we share your world 
to see that you are their friend. 
Would you open their eyes to potential relationships around them. 
Give those who have few or no friends 
the courage to initiate with others. 
Heal where there has been hurt or rejection in the past. 
We pray for an increase of genuine interest in friendship, 
that grace gift so often neglected but with so much potential 
to radically change life for the better. 
We pray those struggling and alone 
would feel seen and loved by the church and by You. 
And this we pray in Jesus’ name 

Alison Gilchrist, 19/10/2022

Alison Gilchrist is an ordained Anglican and currently leads GFS Perth (Western Australia’s oldest not for profit, the local expression of Girl’s Friendly Society Inc.) 
You can contact her at
or visit,
where you can also find out more about #friendshiprevolution,
which is an initiative of GFS Perth. 
GFS Perth, 
4380 West Swan Road, 
West Swan, Western Australia, 6055. 
0455 507 039 


[1] The Survey Center on American Life, Findings from the May 2021 American Perspectives Survey 

[2] The Clergy Journal, May/June 1996. Quoted by Larry Linville, via Ecunet, “Sermonshop 1997 05 04,” #4, 4/28/97 

[3] Camfield, L., Choudhury, K. & Devine, J. Well-being, Happiness and Why Relationships Matter: Evidence from Bangladesh. J Happiness Stud 10, 71–91 (2009)

[4] Putnam, Robert D. “Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community” Simon & Schuster (New York, 2000) p. 332 

[5] Morin, Amy “Loneliness Is as Lethal As Smoking 15 Cigarettes Per Day” 


What a Friend We Have in Jesus 

(Lyrics by Joseph Medlicott Scriven

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! 

Have we trials and temptations? 
    Is there trouble anywhere? 
We should never be discouraged—
    Take it to the Lord in prayer. 
Can we find a friend so faithful, 
    Who will all our sorrows share? 
Jesus knows our every weakness; 
    Take it to the Lord in prayer. 

Are we weak and heavy-laden, 
    Burdened with a load of care? 
Precious Savior, still our refuge—
    Take it to the Lord in prayer. 
Do your friends despise, forsake you? 
    Take it to the Lord in prayer! 
In His arms He’ll take and shield you, 
    You will find a solace there. 

Blessed Savior, You have promised 
    You will all our burdens bear; 
May we ever, Lord, be bringing 
    All to You in earnest prayer. 
Soon in glory bright, unclouded, 
    There will be no need for prayer—
Rapture, praise, and endless worship 
    Will be our sweet portion there. 


(by Bjorn Schmid)

Watching TV or listening to the radio? Seeing a video or listening or reading articles on the Internet? Been to the cinemas or the theatre or a music hall? Who wrote these pieces, who edited them, who produced them, arranged them, orchestrated or directed them, and who paid for them? Who’s performing in them? Who’s promoting or criticising them? 

People are; people like you do these things in Media and Entertainment. Maybe some of your neighbours work in this sphere of society, maybe some of your friends, and maybe even some potential friends. These people all live all around you and often are lonely, by choice or by ‘perchance’. 

People need Jesus. People need to be introduced to Jesus. People need to be prayed for to be introduced to Jesus. Start with one and pray for them, believing that God will send you or one of your brothers or sisters to show Jesus’ love to them. Maybe just a word of kindness to open the door to Him. Maybe a patient ear to hear their troubles. Maybe Jesus will appear to the in a dream and they will finally click on an on-line Bible Study that’s been sticking in their mind to look at for 10 years. God knows the time, place and approach; we pray for this to happen for them, so they will meet Jesus. 

Yes, start with one; ask Father God for one person in Media and Entertainment to pray for, and ask with His love. Add another as He leads you, and another, and another. Pray for each person every day until you see the answer, or sometimes the Holy Spirit will says that it’s time to stop praying for them for now.  Let God lead you and ask for everything to be turned to His glory. 

Doesn’t have to take long, doesn’t have to be fancy words. Just speak to your Heavenly Father and ask Him to reach out to touch these people today and bring them into your family, the Body of Christ, forever. For God so loved… Amen. 

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