Feeling out of sorts and want someone to pray with you, but no one is available?
A free app available for iOS and Android devices hopes to help with that.
On its Internet home page, Instapray bills itself as “Your safe place to give and get support.”
This social media app says it “is a safe place that connects people around the world through prayers. Request prayers, share your prayers, pray for someone, and get connected! Become a part of the Instapray community and share your love, support, happiness, or struggles with the world around you.”
Instapray has the look and feel of other social media apps.
The app home page looks like a Facebook feed with prayer requests coming in.
Some requests are simple typed messages. Others have emoticons and emojis. Many messages sport designed art with Bible verses or other encouragement.
Subjects range broadly. Health issues were the most common request.
“Please pray for my dog who is sick” came through Wednesday afternoon.
Other requests included prayers for a daughter fighting to get her last paycheck and someone wanting a husband to change his mind about a divorce.
On the home page feed, a heart icon acts as a “Like” button, telling the requester you prayed for his or her request.
When posting a prayer, the app allows you to share the action on other social networks.
Similar to a share on Facebook or a retweet on Twitter, there is a “Repray” button to send someone else’s request to your followers.
There is a comment button to respond to a person and an @ command to tag other users in prayers. Comments and hashtags are encouraged.
Private messages between users are available.
Also, users can form private or public groups. Instapray says these can be for anything but suggests using groups for foreign languages or a private group. Perhaps a Bible study or prayer group could use it to stay connected through the week.
So does it work? I used the default first prayer: “I’m new to Instapray, praying for my first experience on Instapray.” Within a half hour, eight people had responded from the United Kingdom, the Philippines, Germany and Arizona.
As of Wednesday, the app’s site said 32,190,492 prayers had been said by users from 200 countries.