“…for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing during those days, and at the end of them he was hungry” (Luke 4:2).

We share a world that is not necessarily drawn to giving up. We do, perform, consume, schedule, and excel. Often, attempts to reduce or forgo things can devolve into self-righteousness or guilt.  Yet, every spring during the Lent season, we’re offered a beautiful opportunity to “…throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles” (Hebrews 12:1). Let's take a moment to learn more about the season of Lent and then read prayers for lent. May these prayers help you focus your mind's attention and your heart's affection on our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Lent Prayers - 40 Days toward Freedom

Through the intentional sacrifice of Lent, we’re offered continual spiritual freedom from cultural insinuations associated with denial, fasting, and even “seasons.” What’s offered to us in the message of Lent, not only the practice of observing it, is that we have a Savior who knows every struggle. And he is able to supply our needs. He is able to cleanse, renew, and show us the way to eternal life. One of the main focuses of lent is prayer. Praying through the Lenten season allows us to draw closer to our relationship with God and remembrance of what He has done for us.

Lent is celebrated over a period of 46 days (excluding 6 Sundays, which adds up to a 40-day fast), beginning on Ash Wednesday. This number, 40, appears over 140 times in Scripture. It generally symbolizes a period of testing, trial, or probation.

Moses endured 40 years in the desert before God selected him to lead his people out of slavery. Jonah warned Nineveh for 40 days. Even the book of Exodus, detailing deliverance from spiritual drought, is 40 chapters. 

But, God.

“My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever” (Psalm 73:26, emphasis added).

lent prayers

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Use our 40 Day Devotional Guide to lead you in prayer and scripture reading through the Lenten Season!

As you’re deciding what to turn from, to help turn your heart toward God’s glorious will—or pressing on through 40 days—here are 5 uplifting prayers for Lent. The purpose of prayer is simply to communicate with God and open your heart to hearing from Him. Let us come before God with humility and thanks:

1. Lenten Prayer: A Prayer to Search Me, Lord, This Lent

“Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know…” (Psalm 139:23).

Dear God,

I confess I may not completely understand the “how” and “why” of Lent. I ask you to speak to me now. 

Here in my quiet aloneness of my time with you, search me for any selfish motives or sins I cling to that are sapping me of the life you desire. Prepare my heart for what you would have me forgo, and strengthen me to seek you instead. 

Wake me, Lord, if I am blind to my patterns of self-destruction. Show me what it is that I can live more fully without. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

2. A Prayer for Cleansing during Lent

“Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me” (Psalm 51:10).

Heavenly Father,

Silence the noise in my soul. Empty me of cravings for things of this world that do not truly satisfy. Fill me with the bread of your presence and the living water of your mercy.

I have honored the temporal delights of so many unfulfilling habits, and I’m ready for freedom. Wash me of all my addictions, failings, and temptations, even if only minute by minute. Pick me up and hold me, this day, and every day as I praise you for who you are.

Remind me that it is your power in me, not my own, that offers life to others.

Wash this vessel, Lord. Prepare me for renewal. In Jesus’ name, Amen.


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3. A Lent Prayer to Glorify God

“So, whether you eat or drink, or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God” (1 Cor. 10:31).

Dear God,

I know you see me. I know you see that although I know you, I still chase after so many worldly lies of affirmation. I still seek validation of my worth by going along with the crowd or performing.

Help me to not boast of my Lent choices, but rather share only when you lead me. Help me to listen for your voice, not mine.

I’m not walking through intentional sacrifice to glorify myself and my will. But to remember how much you gave up so that I can offer your hope to others. Help me to not be a clanging cymbal, or focus on my lack over Lent, but to shine more clearly your pure radiance from the joy of knowing you. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

4. A Lenten Gratitude Prayer for the Ultimate Sacrifice

“Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful” (Col. 4:2).

 Oh God,

Whatever I can give up for Lent will never match what you gave. I’m not able to do what you have done, and my small actions serve only as desperate wildflowers waving in an open field of your mercy, in surrender to your majesty.

As I clear away distractions you invite me to let go of, hear my prayer of gratitude. That you are real. That you are truth. That you prepare a place for me whether I am in want or in plenty.

Thank you for the ultimate sacrifice of your only Son, Jesus, so that I can know that no matter what the world tempts me with…there is power to overcome. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

5. A Prayer to Satisfy My Hunger for You Year-Round

“…for he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things” (Psalm 107:9).

Father,

Help me use this year’s Lent invitation to stoke a hunger for you all year. Help me realize I’m not “too busy” or “too important” to not seek your voice, your security, your deliverance.

As you search me, cleanse me, and use me to glorify you all the days of my life here, stand in the way of the things that overstuff my life, blurring my vision of you as my provider.

I’ve given up _______ this Lent. But I want to know what is next for me. Please be Lord of my every day. Reach me, break through, show me your glory.

What would you have me turn from, so I can be filled with your presence all year? Reveal to me what you would you have me turn toward, so I can humbly, and gratefully, share your sustenance with others.  In Jesus’ name, Amen.

As you prepare for, move through, and enjoy the effects of your prayerful Lent decisions, you can find ideas for practicing sacrifice all year here. It explains, “If we spend the weeks before Easter cultivating a spiritual practice that makes our new life more evident to others year-round, we honor the Risen Christ who gave us that life.”

May God bless you richly as you let go and lean on him.

6. A Prayer to Renew My Strength throughout the Day

“...but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles...” (Isaiah 40:31).

Father, you know the moments in my day when my energy fades. Right now is one of those times. I feel stressed, overwhelmed, tired. I wanted to get “so much done” today and it already feels like so little. Will you be my strength?

As I switch gears mid-task to move in ways that energize me, or breathe deeply, I throw open my soul for you to move throughout every part of my being.

I surrender my fatigue to you and believe your power is great even now in my weakness. Pick me up, Lord, and empower me to do or reorganize what you see before me. In Jesus’ name, amen. 

10 Additional Prayer for to Use During Lent

Prayer for Strength and Resilience

Most High and Holy Lord, thank You for greeting me with love and faithfulness every morning and night. Help me to bend, not break, in the winds of all I’ve got happening with my life, heart and home right now. Please give me a fresh strength and vitality today to walk in Your ways and thrive in Your grace. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. – Gwen Smith

A Simple Fasting Prayer

Lord, please forgive us for craving food more than you. Forgive us for craving anything more than you. Lord redirect our hunger. Be our God. Open our eyes to the benefits of fasting. Open our hearts to you like never before. Give us the desire to turn to you with all our hearts, with all our souls, with all our strength. May we no longer live by bread alone but by every word that comes from your mouth Oh LORD. Teach us to fast so that we might hold fast to you. In Jesus Name, Amen. - Alyssa Wollard

Freedom Through Lent Fasting

Dear Lord, nothing has worked to set me free from the compulsive way I turn to other things when I could be turning to You. I need more of You and less of the stuff that leaves me hungry. Take all these heavy idols I’m laying down and teach me to lean into Your gentle refining. Take my life as I empty it out and fill me with Yourself. Your Word proclaims: “It is for freedom that Christ has set you free” (Galatians 5:1, NIV). I’m choosing to believe that’s true. Set me free! In the bondage-breaking, freedom-giving, sweet name of Jesus, Amen. - Wendy Speake

To Find Strength and Identity in the Lord

Lord, thank You for the comfort that comes from knowing You created us to find our identity and strength in You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. – Alli Worthington

Fasting for Holy Spirit Guidance

Father, I pray that You would remind me of Your still small voice. That You would quiet all distractions. I ask for Your call and purpose in my life to be made clear. Remove any and all confusion. I pray for the power of the Holy Spirit to speak to me and guide me as I journey on. Remind me Lord, that You have called your church the set apart ones and I am part of that. All for Your glory, Lord. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen. 

A Prayer of Endurance

Lord God, sometimes the tasks before me loom high and insurmountable, like a wall I cannot possibly scale. I grow weary. My human weaknesses threaten to bring me to my knees.

But with You, Lord, I can do all things. With Your supernatural power, my faith can move mountains, because it rests in You, the author of all things.

Please grant me strength, endurance, health, and stamina today. Help me devote all I do to You, Lord.

I pray this with all I am, Amen. - Jessica Brodie

A Prayer of Contentment

Father God, Sometimes my heart yearns for all the things I think I don’t have, instead of cherishing the blessings You give. Today, I choose to turn over all my wants and instead rest in Your love. In Psalm 46:10 You urge us to recognize Your glory, telling us, “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” Your glory is enough—You are enough. As You told your son Joshua as he was about to enter the Promised Land all those thousands of years ago, You will never leave us or forsake us. We can trust in You, and You will protect and provide for us. 

Help me rest in that love and feel the peace that You provide rest on my bones today and every day. I love You, Lord. Amen. - Jessica Brodie

Celebrating Lent from Ash Wednesday to Easter Sunday

Ash Wednesday marks (symbolically, in the form of a cross on your forehead) your commitment to believing the many truths God’s Word teaches about how we were formed. We use this time to remind ourselves of his ability to bring beauty from ashes. Miracles from pain. Life from death. 

It’s a time set apart to prepare busy hearts for celebrating that Christ is risen, and is Lord of all. 

And although during Lent we may find ourselves meditating on the tragic events leading to his crucifixion, the reason we “celebrate” Lent is this: Jesus faced unbearable testing, pain, even death…and yet the result is glory. Forever. That’s worth brushing some things away to embrace. 

Giving up food or drink can serve as a means of atonement, as with Yom Kippur. It can also clear the way for a meeting with God. Moses, for example, fasted prior to going up the mountain to meet with God and receive the Ten Commandments in Exodus 34:28

So, before you think of Lent as just a “diet,” consider that you’re invited to let go of anything that tempts you. These can be tricks of the enemy that go beyond cravings. We can choose to let go of jealousy, or unforgiveness, or self-destructive self-talk. The beauty of Lent is that you can sacrifice darkness and, at the cost of discomfort temporarily, walk into the light.

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authorLia Martin loves to inspire others to lean into the Lord daily. She's a writer, editor, marketer, former Crosswalk.com Faith Editor, and author of Wisdom at Wit's End: Abandoning Supermom Myths in Search of Supernatural Peace. When she's not cultivating words, she loves walking in nature, reading, exploring the latest health trends, and laughing with her two wonderful kids. She blogs at liamartinwriting.com.