by Nancy Taylor Tate
As I was in prayer today, I remembered a situation we faced a number of years ago. My husband, David, was in Mozambique on a short-term mission trip. I was happy for him to be there, as I knew it was his heart’s desire.
I was busy as the pastor of a church where I knew God had called us, and was caught up in my times of fellowship with the Lord as I spent time waiting in His presence, in prayer, God’s Word, and the things I was doing. One particular day however, such intercession came on me for David that I could hardly bear it. I remember telling our church of the intensity of it, as we met that Sunday and prayed together.
That intercession lasted for a couple of days, then it lifted. I remember wondering what it had been all about, as I continued on where God had me. It was a few days later that I received a phone call. David told me he had been riding in a truck when a gunman came up the road. Standing about five feet away, the gunman aimed an AK47 at the center of his chest, then shot. The blast threw him back, so the gunman thought he hit him, and left. However, the bullet missed! As I spoke to David on the phone, he was still in shock. I remember saying over and over to him, “But intercession came, and we were praying for you.”
The Lord is calling us into a place of fellowship with Him. From that place of fellowship, He will give us the right prayer at the right time, the right declaration, the right word ─ whatever it is He has need of, as we make ourselves available for His higher purposes.
In Genesis 18, Abraham was simply sitting in the door of his tent, when the Lord came. Abraham’s immediate response was to minister to the Lord. From that place of fellowship, the Lord said, “Should I not share with my friend Abraham that which I am about to do?” Abraham was brought into a place of intercession for the righteous to be saved and brought out of Sodom and Gomorrah before judgment fell.
As Christians, we are in covenant relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. Covenant is a very powerful thing. David, when faced by enemies, prayed on the basis of covenant. An understanding of covenant brings tremendous peace and reassurance that we have a God who loves us, and who will move on our behalf when we cry out to Him, be it for our own lives, or the life of another.
Today, as I was walking in the Prayer Chapel and praying, intercession came as I cried out, “Oh Lord, the blood of your people. Lord, the blood of your people.” Though I care deeply of my own self, in that moment my cry went beyond my own concern, to an expression of the very heart of God and the fellowship of His sufferings. (Phil. 3:10)
As I prayed, this scripture came to mind:
“The Lord said, “What have you done? Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground.” Genesis 4:10 NIV
There are those who have died because of their faith, but their blood still speaks.
“By faith Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was commended as a righteous man, when God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith he still speaks, even though he is dead.” Hebrews 11:4 NIV
We are to practice the presence of the Lord, every moment of every day. But as we also set apart time to fellowship with the Lord, He will share His heart with us and cause us to be a part of that which He is doing today, just as He did with Abraham in his day.
Isaiah 60 speaks of gross darkness on the face of the earth. We are seeing that! Yet we are also told that His glory will arise and be seen in the midst of this darkness.
“For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise upon thee, and his glory shall be seen upon thee.” Isaiah 60:2 KJV
Can our prayers make a difference? Yes! We can enter into fellowship with the Lord and allow His heart to find expression through us. There is a “presencing” of the Lord that we can contend for. There is also a “word with consequences” that God is releasing, that can and will have an impact.
I remember another experience I had years ago. I was watching one of God’s chosen saints suffer at the mouth of another. As I watched and listened, I went into a dialogue with the Lord. As I did, I remembered another man of God who also suffered greatly. Within myself I said to the Lord, “You don’t treat those who love You very well.” As I did, suddenly, so fierce it startled me, I heard come through my mouth, “That’s enough!” Instantly, the verbal beating this precious man of God was taking, stopped. Through that experience, I came into a new realization of the power and authority of a quickened word that comes from God, as well as His fierce love over them that love Him.
The word of God is powerful! It is at His word the world was formed. Let’s believe for the Lord to draw us, as never before, into times of fellowship with Him, that we might come to know His heart and speak His quickened word, as His Spirit within us moves and finds expression through our very lives.
The need is urgent. The Lord is looking today for those who would make themselves available to fellowship with Him. Will we respond by saying, “Lord, I am available,” and then make the necessary choices to set aside time to be with Him?
We all have responsibilities we must fulfill, in a right way that gives glory to God. But there is other time available in our days that we can redeem, so we can spend in prayer, worship, waiting on the Lord, meditating on His Word…watching, waiting and listening for His guidance, that we might be available for His higher purposes. As we set our gaze on the Lord, and in yieldedness spend time with Him, we can become more sensitive and responsive to His Spirit, becoming channels through whom God can move today.
Derek Prince wrote a book, Shaping History through Prayer and Fasting. Just the title says a lot! We have the testimony of the impact made by Reese Howells and the intercessors who prayed during World War II.
As we make ourselves available to the Lord today, we too, can make a difference.