This simple blog is devoted to the greatest privilege that man has ever been given; PRAYER.
At this point you may be asking, What is the difference between prayer and intercession? Prayer starts with you and what you know to be the obvious facts as you bring them before God. God will then take over and you will pray what is on your heart and mind until you have prayed it through. Many times prayer will lead to intercession, where God takes over and you are praying in ways you do not understand for that person.
Intercession differs from prayer in that it starts and ends with God. You might be driving along and someone will come to your mind, maybe a sense of urgency about a friend or relative, or even a person you haven’t thought about in years. This is God speaking to you. Sometimes you won’t understand why you are praying what you are praying, but as you are obedient to pray what you are sensing, God’s will is done on earth. Sometimes God will allow you to know the outcome; other times He won’t. Your responsibility is to be obedient.
An example of this from my own life involves a favorite cousin I hadn’t seen in about 10 years. I crawled out of bed in the middle of the night for a glass of water when a picture of my cousin canvassed my mind. Suddenly I dropped to my knees and began to cry out, “God, don’t let Mike move! Keep him still, Lord! Keep him still! Oh God, please don’t let him move! Hold him, Lord! Hold him!” words ceased, and when they did. I could not muster another word. So I got up, drank a glass of water and started back toward the bedroom. Again I fell to the floor and began to cry out with a grave sense of urgency. “Don’t let him move. God! Don’t let Mike move! Stay still! Stay still!” The words came to an abrupt end. This time I thought, Oh no! This must be a nightmare!
I had no feeling inside of me other than the feeling to pray. I got up and began to pace the floor, wondering what in the world that was all about One more time I took a few steps toward the bedroom when again I dropped to the floor. Only this time I was yelling, “Get him up, Lord! Get him to run! Run, Mike! Lord, help him to run… run…run! Let him run, God! Run, run, run!” After several minutes, a calm came over me and I returned to bed for the night.
The following day, I called my aunt to see if she could help me put the pieces together about my puzzling outcries the night before. She informed me that Mike was in Vietnam. The experience still made very little sense.
Finally, a month later my aunt called to read a letter she had received. The letter told how Mike, who was a pilot, had been shot down and landed in a tree. He had been warned to get out of the area as quickly as possible, but explained that just a few hundred yards from the crash site, he fell into a bush. “Mom,” he wrote, “it was like I was pinned down. I felt like somebody was sitting on me. The Vietcong came and were unknowingly standing on my pant leg while looking up at my parachute in the tree. They turned around and began to slash the bushes with their bayonets. It looked safe, so I started to get up and was about to run when once again I fell into the bush as though someone were pushing me. I laid there for a couple of minutes when suddenly I had an impulse to get up and run. I heard a helicopter so I sprinted through the wooded area, following the direction of the noise, to an open space where I was whisked off to safety. The helicopter crew said they came in response to my beeper. And yet, it had not been working when I was shot down.” That, dear ones, is intercession!
Excerpt from Chapter 1 (Why pray?) of “Becoming a Prayer Warrior” by Elizabeth Alves