Tag Archives: intercession

Just for Intercessors: Not an Easy Job (Part 2)

So, you want to be, or are already, an intercessor?  Intercession is hard.  For the most part, it is a very behind-the-scenes ministry, with little recognition and sometimes not a great deal of respect, either.  Being on the worship team, preaching, teaching, healing the sick, prophesying, evangelizing – all these are “doing” functions in Christ’s Body, openly seen and acknowledged. True intercession, on the other hand, frequently remains a closet ministry.  If it is your calling you desire to do it, but there are times when its invisible nature makes intercession a lonely road to travel.

By definition, intercession is an others-first ministry.  While non-intercessors can spend the majority of their prayer life focusing on their own needs and relationship with the Lord, intercessors have the drive to pray about things and people outside themselves – and we are not happy if we aren’t doing so.  We must take time for our personal relationship with Jesus just like everyone else, but it is easy to neglect doing so, because we feel so pressed for others.  I love to spend intimate time with the Lord, but I have to remind myself that it is OK to take that time, the desperate urgency to obtain answers to prayer being so uppermost in my mind.

Intercessors are prone to struggling with self-worth, because usually we do not see immediate, tangible results for our efforts. Because it is not a visible ministry most of the time, we don’t often get pats on the back.  Sometimes we are even criticized by other people for not “doing” anything for the Lord.  To top it all off, the devil tempts us with, “Is prayer really accomplishing anything?”  “Maybe if I didn’t pray, this would all work out fine anyway,” and “I don’t feel needed.”  (The demonic jamming of our thoughts, by the way, is because intercession is so important, and Satan will do his utmost to derail it.)

Yet, our Father in heaven sees our ministry as essential to the success of the Church.  Two persons of the Godhead, Jesus and the Holy Spirit, operate in the ministry of intercession.

Romans 8:26, 27Likewise the Spirit also helps our weaknesses: for we don’t know what we should pray for as we ought to, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because he intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.

Romans 8:34 –  … It is Christ who died, yes, and is risen again, who is even at the right hand of God, who intercedes for us. 

Hebrews 7:25 – … He [Jesus] is able also to save them to the uttermost that come to God by him, seeing he ever lives to intercede for them.

If two-thirds of the Trinity are involved in intercession, it must be a pretty important ministry!  If it’s good enough for Jesus, it’s good enough for me!

Self-denial is a basic requirement for intercessors.  We do it for others … for others … for others.  The deeper we go in the intercessory life, the more God will confront us with areas of our hearts that we are still holding back for ourselves.  This is serious business.  The Apostle Paul, himself an intercessor, said, “I die daily” (1 Corinthians 15:31), and this is the testimony of those who embrace intercession in modern times as well.  As we yield ourselves to the Lord in prayer, He works humility within us.  The refining process is necessary, but never fun.

Previous: Introduction (Part 1)
Next: What Intercessors Do (Part 3) 
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Excerpted from Lee Ann’s book, The Intercessor Manual 

Out of the Fire Ministries

Just for Intercessors: Intro (Part 1)

I would like to take time to talk about a passion of my heart – intercession.  If any single group of people has been stereotyped as a “peculiar people” (1 Peter 2:9), it has been the intercessors.  In the King James, “peculiar” does not mean strange, as some have thought.  It means unique and set apart.  Intercessors are often misunderstood and deemed strange – and that is partly our own fault.  God wants us to be “peculiar” in the sense of being set apart, but not in the sense of acting strangely.

In the following posts we will explore:

Why intercession is a tough ministry
What intercessors do – especially in the spirit realm
Avoiding weirdness
Discerning where our revelation is coming from
The relationship between pastor and intercessor
Intercessors whose specialty is praying for their pastors

Next: Intercession Is Not an Easy Job (Part 2)

NewIntMan100
Excerpted from Lee Ann’s book, The Intercessor Manual 

Out of the Fire Ministries

The Prophetic Intercessor (book review)

(Following is a review of James Goll’s book, The Prophetic Intercessor.  I know many of you are looking for information right now on prophetic intercession, and I write a lot on this subject myself.  Please take a look at the Series Topics in the right side bar for a wealth of posts on prophetic intercession.  You may also be interested in my book, The Intercessor Manual.) 

Recently I read James Goll’s The Prophetic Intercessor.  It’s a wonderful book, and I learned so much.

Here are a few of the concepts taught by Mr. Goll:

About “groaning in the spirit” (Romans 8:26, 27): “Those who are self-satisfied will have difficulty groaning; those who are desperate will have great difficulty not groaning.”

Intercessors not only build a wall or hedge of protection about others to keep out satanic attack.  They also build a wall to stave off God’s judgment by crying out for mercy for an individual or a people.

James Goll Prophetic IntercessorWorship and intercession must go hand in hand.

“Tenacity and endurance are required when the result seems to be delayed.  Even when the breakthrough begins, it takes eyes of discernment to see it.”

There is a relationship between responsibility and authority. If we have a God-given responsibility, we are granted authority through prayer.

“Discernment must be stewarded carefully.  We will either turn it into private intercession or gossip and slander.”

Anna, who prayed night and day in the temple (Luke 2:36, 37), was called a “prophetess” by God, yet she did not have a public ministry.  She ministered to the Lord in the secret place of intercession.

One of the most helpful chapters for me was the one on wisdom issues.  It dealt with protecting ourselves when doing spiritual warfare.  Mr. Goll talked a lot about keeping our focus on Jesus, rather than having our eyes on the devil or what the devil is trying to accomplish.  He commented that often the enemy brings problems to the forefront of our lives for the sole purpose of distracting us from Jesus and to derail our pure devotion for the Lord.  We do not need to war about everything; we can pick and choose which fights are important for us to engage in.  We must let Jesus guide our use of authority, rather than wearing ourselves out fighting every battle that comes along.

I was encouraged to find out that although Mr. Goll is considered to be one of the top prophets of our day, he was not sovereignly gifted in the prophetic from birth.  He did not experience fantastic open-eyed visions from the time he was a child.  He came into it gradually, through purposefully and diligently desiring to be prophetic and through actively praying Ephesians 1:15-19.  I am not among those who have been sovereignly gifted in the prophetic, either, and I took heart and hope in reading that I can come into a high level of hearing and seeing in the Spirit by asking God to increase it in me.  (Isn’t it great that God wants to reach down and pull up those of us who are average into higher levels than we ever thought we could get to?)

I highly recommend The Prophetic Intercessor to anyone with a leaning toward prayer, from the person who is still wondering if he or she has a call to intercession, on up to the most seasoned of prayer warriors.

Purchase this book at Amazon: The Prophetic Intercessor
Or, see Lee Ann’s book, The Intercessor Manual

 

The Power of Your Prayer Language (Part 7)

We’ve talked about why the gift of tongues, as used in our private prayer language, is so vital to living a powerful Christian life.  It produces health in our bodies, thoughts, and emotions.  It is one of the weapons of our spiritual warfare, is the seventh piece of the armor mentioned in Ephesians 6, and enables us to pray perfect prayers according to God’s will.  It produces a communion between God and us that causes us to walk in greater faith, wisdom, understanding, and discernment.  And, combined with the interpretation of tongues, it helps us to hear God’s voice.

The question we might ask at this point is, “Why would I not want to pray in tongues?”

I would like to encourage those of my readers who have not yet received their prayer language to press God for it until you do receive it.  It is not that He is unwilling to give it to us; it is that some of us have a harder time than others in pressing past our own issues to get to the point of yielding.  Hebrews 11:6 tells us, “… He [God] is a rewarder of those who diligently seek him,”  and Psalm 84:11 promises, “… No good thing will he withhold from those who walk uprightly.”  As the saying goes, anything worth having is worth fighting for.  Great men of God, such as John G. Lake and Smith Wigglesworth, have struggled to receive their prayer language, yet they refused to give up until they received the promise, and they were not disappointed.

(Note: Since first writing this article, I have learned more about how to aid people in receiving their prayer language easily. Please see my article, How to Easily be Baptized in the Spirit with Tongues.)

For those of you who already have your prayer language, may I encourage you to use it abundantly?  You can train yourself into the habit of praying in tongues (in a whisper, if you like) while you work around the house, drive your car, and do other everyday tasks.  After awhile, it becomes so natural to pray in your prayer language, that you do not consciously make a decision to do it, and you may have been praying for some time before you become aware of it.  It enables us to be in constant communion with the Lord throughout our day.  It’s one of the ways to bring ourselves closer to Paul’s command to “Pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17).

Paul commented, “I thank my God, I speak with tongues more than you all” (1 Corinthians 14:18).  If the prayer language was important to Paul, it should be treasured and nurtured by us, too.

Previous: The Power of Your Prayer Language (Part 6) 

 

Excerpted from Lee Ann’s book, The Intercessor Manual

 

 

The Baptism in the Spirit: Why You Need It & How to Get It, by Lee Ann Rubsam (CD or mp3)

The Power of Your Prayer Language (Part 6)

There is a cry inside most of us to hear God speak to us.  He wants to fulfill this longing.  One of the names by which He reveals Himself is “He Who Speaks” (Isaiah 52:6).  But a lot of people still struggle with learning to hear and know God’s voice.  One of the best ways to hear accurately from God is by praying in tongues and then receiving the interpretation.  I discovered this technique a few years ago, and it has truly enhanced my ability to hear God and to know how to pray.  Here’s how it works for me:

I pray a lot in tongues.  When I pray, I often switch back and forth between my prayer language and English.  I have learned to pay close attention to what I pray in English in between praying in tongues, because often it is something I would not know to pray in my natural mind.  It is actually an interpretation of what I have already been covering in my prayer language; it is fresh revelation from the Spirit Himself.  Interpretation may come as a phrase we pray out loud, a Scripture verse, a thought on how to pray, a word of knowledge, or even a picture or vision.

For instance, once while praying for a pastor-friend in tongues, I clearly heard the thought in my mind, “praying for the unexpected.”  I did not understand what it was about, but I continued to pray along the lines of preparing him for something unexpected.  About three weeks down the road, he experienced some very unpleasant circumstances that he had not foreseen.  But the way was prepared before him in intercessory prayer so that he could handle the event when it happened.

Another time I was praying for a loved one who was going through difficulties, and I was very concerned about receiving a good outcome for him.  The words, “God who performs all things for him” flowed out in English in the middle of my prayer language.  It was the Holy Spirit’s reminder of a Scripture verse, Psalm 57:2“I will cry unto God most high; unto God who performs all things for me.”  The Holy Spirit was using my prayer language to pray that God would take care of his need, and by interpreting the prayer for me, He was also assuring me that everything was going to be all right.

At still another time I was praying for my pastor for his upcoming sermon.  After praying in tongues for a bit, I was startled to hear myself speak in English, “God, help him with his sermon on brokenness.”  He had not informed me what his sermon was to be about, but it turned out to be exactly that.  God was interpreting my prayer language and giving me a word of knowledge.

Paul says in 1 Corinthians 14:13-15, “… let him who speaks in an unknown tongue pray that he may interpret.  For if I pray in an unknown tongue, my spirit prays, but my understanding is unfruitful.  What then?  I will pray with the spirit, and I will pray with the understanding also….”  Those of us who are Pentecostal or Charismatic understand that when a message is given publicly in tongues, an interpretation should be given.  However, few of us were ever taught that this is a normal part of using our prayer language privately as well.

If you have trouble hearing the voice of God, try asking Him to interpret for you what you are saying in your prayer language.  In addition, because we are communing with God on a spirit-to-Spirit level when we pray in tongues, it opens us up to revelation of other sorts.  You will find that you are more prone to having godly, creative ideas flow in your thoughts when you have been praying in tongues.  You may receive visions.  Your understanding and wisdom will increase.

I’ll have a few more thoughts on the power of our prayer language in the next post, and then we’ll be done.

Previous: The Power of Your Prayer Language (Part 5)
Next: The Power of Your Prayer Lanugage (Part 7) 

 

Excerpted from Lee Ann’s book, The Intercessor Manual

 

 

The Baptism in the Spirit: Why You Need It & How to Get It, by Lee Ann Rubsam (CD or mp3)