June 7, 2016

Intercessory Prayer

Chambers interprets intercessory prayer the same way I do. It is a life mission, part of my spiritual-giftedness, and the only power available to me. When I pray in the name of Jesus and my goal is that God is glorified in the Son, then God will do what I ask.

“Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.” (John 14:13)

Chambers talks about the importance of taking time to focus, to abide in Christ and to consider my main priority. If I compare myself to most “prayer warriors” I feel that my intercessory efforts fall short. Earlier this morning I asked myself if I was easily able to trust God with the burdens of my heart, or is it more likely that I don’t care about people as much as I should?

Yet when I pray, I sense the power of God. I know that He hears me and I know that He answers. Does that mean I can handle His silences? What about fervent prayer that seems to bounce off the ceiling? Do I keep praying even when nothing seems to be happening? Or does His silence mean that God trying to tell me something about my praying?

Chambers writes this: “If ye abide in Me”—continue to act and think and work from that center—“ye shall ask what ye will, and it shall be done unto you.”

Am I abiding? Am I taking time to abide? Or do I go through much of the day without thinking about the great thing that Jesus Christ has done?

Chambers asks other questions, like: What is the greatest factor of power in my life? Is it work, service, sacrifice for others, or trying to work for God?

The thing that ought to exert the greatest power in my life is the Atonement of the Lord. Chambers points out that it is not the thing I spend the most time on that molds me the most, but the thing that exerts most power. He says I must determine to be limited and concentrate my affinities.

My world is filled with things that deeply affect me. The news often breaks my heart, but the power of that to mold my heart does not last. I cannot endure the pain of this messed up world and will either pray it away or allow myself to be distracted to things less excruciating.

The spiritual state of family and friends has the same effect. Here is a place where I need to focus and yield to a higher power, the power of the Gospel to change lives. When I abide in that place, heartbreak turns to hope, pessimism to optimism, despair to anticipation.

I’m challenged. I tend to pray with a focus on the need instead of focusing on God’s supply. Asking in the name of Jesus means asking as His emissary, representing Him and His desires. That means paying less attention to that which saddens Him (and me) and greater attention to the wonder of what He can and will do in the lives of those around me.

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