Higher Ground

mesaIf you read at Out of the Fire on a regular basis, you know I often encourage intercessors to  wait on God for His perspective before launching into prayer.

A couple of weeks ago, we borrowed Higher Ground, a faith-based movie, from our library. We didn’t immediately watch it, but every time I passed that DVD case, those words, “higher ground,” caught my eye just a teeny bit. It didn’t really register, until I found myself humming the old Johnson Oatman, Jr. hymn by the same name. Finally the light dawned: “Aha! God is trying to speak to me!” (Side note: God often speaks to us in very small ways, but we miss His voice, because we’re just not paying attention.)

I hadn’t heard or sung Higher Ground in years, but once I understood God was drawing my attention to it, I looked up the words. They so aptly fit the concept of gaining God’s viewpoint. I have been meditating on the hymn since then, and I want to share it with you:

I’m pressing on the upward way,
New heights I’m gaining every day;
Still praying as I’m onward bound,
“Lord, plant my feet on higher ground.”

Refrain:
Lord, lift me up and let me stand,
By faith, on heaven’s tableland,
A higher plane than I have found;
Lord, plant my feet on higher ground.

My heart has no desire to stay
Where doubts arise and fears dismay;
Though some may dwell where those abound,
My prayer, my aim, is higher ground.

(Refrain)

I want to live above the world,
Though Satan’s darts at me are hurled;
For faith has caught the joyful sound,
The song of saints on higher ground.

(Refrain)

I want to scale the utmost height
And catch a gleam of glory bright;
But still I’ll pray till heav’n I’ve found,
“Lord, plant my feet on higher ground.”

(In case you’ve never heard this hymn, I’ve included a YouTube version of it at the end of this post.)

Higher Ground is the song of the overcomer. As the world around us becomes increasingly chaotic, we really must learn to live above it all. Ephesians 2:6 says God has “made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus.”

It’s also the song of the prophetic prayer warrior, concerning how we pray. We have a choice to make:

a.) Pray only from the natural realm perspective (as many habitually do), where “doubts arise and fears dismay,” praying from a position of fear, OR

b.) Go for the higher ground of God’s perspective, where we gain insight into what He wants to do in a given situation. Then, pray with confidence for His desired outcome.

Sometimes moving from the natural view to God’s view is a journey. We seek His face for what to think and how to pray, but getting His understanding doesn’t always happen rapidly. For me, it can be quite a lengthy process, but I keep inquiring, keep stepping forward in the little light I have. As I do that, more light shines.

During the period of time when I am still unsure how the Lord would have me tackle an issue, I pray a lot in tongues. As we pray in this way, the Holy Spirit releases wisdom about how to pray also with our understanding.

Like the song says, our aim is higher ground. We ascend the heights in incremental steps. But each time we ask Him for His perspective, we get a little more proficient in finding it. Over time, it becomes easier.

May I encourage you to go for the higher ground? It’s a powerful — and satisfying — place to pray from. When we do so, we are interceding in union with God, and that gets answers!

 

intercessor handbook

 

 

The Intercessor Manual,
by Lee Ann Rubsam

 

intercessor teaching

 

 

Your Intercession Questions Answered, by Lee Ann Rubsam

 

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