“Prayer is the one prime, eternal condition by which the Father is pledged to put the Son in possession of the world. Christ prays through His people.”
-E. M. Bounds
Which one of us has not grown weary in prayer and needed someone to intercede for us? In Scripture we have many types of prayers: Requests (I Tim 2:1-3), Petitions (James 5:15), Confession (I Jn 1:9), Praise, Thanksgiving (Phil 4:6), etc. Perhaps, the most commonly used form of prayer is petitions, bringing our needs before God. Secondly might be intercession; when we shift the focus from our own needs to the needs and interests of others. E.M Bounds says, “Talking to people about God is a great privilege, but talking to God for people is greater still.” The Bible has many examples of people standing up for others before God. Noah, Abraham (Gen 18), Joshua, (Josh. 7) Samuel (I Sam 8) David (I Ch. 16) Ezra (8) Paul (Rom. 9) They accept God’s divine invitation to partner with Him in prayer for others as his preferred and mysterious way of accomplishing His will on earth.
A common phrase in pop culture today is “squad goals”: an aspirational goal for your group of closest friends to reach (said with either seriousness or in jest depending on the person). Who is in your prayer squad? I’ve always been grateful and astounded by the fact that Jesus is the first person to commit to our prayer squad. In fact, Romans 8 reassures us that “Christ Jesus who died–more than that, who was raised to life–is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.” How amazing that the Son of God is constantly praying for me from heaven! In John 17, he interceded for us, his followers, that God would bless and protect us. Jesus’ life was a living intercessory prayer as He took on the role of our divine mediator between death and eternal life.
Intercession is like the Gospel, one person standing in for another. Intercession is like giving spiritual CPR to someone. Biblically we see that one of the greatest ministries we can have to one another is prayer. Intercession is one of the greatest gifts we can experience with God and one of the greatest gifts we can give someone. If you haven’t already, then I encourage you to establish your own intercessory prayer squad. A few people that you reach out to at a moment’s notice to intercede for you. Modern technology makes this markedly easier than it used to be. I, in fact, have multiple members of my prayer squad living thousands of miles away but always willing to pray at the drop of a text or call.
Here at Coracle, we have our own prayer squad goals. As you may or may not know we have a prayer team made up of volunteers who commit to pray for the ministry of Coracle regularly and confidentially. They receive a monthly email with prayer celebrations and requests and they intercede for us on those various matters. We are so grateful for their faithful prayers! If you would like to join our prayer team, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will add you to the list!
This week, may we be followers of Jesus who faithfully follow Him into the place of intercessory prayer for others. May we hear his invitation to be an agent of His Kingdom on earth through the inestimable power of prayer.