Monday, September 20, 2010
~ "Pray one for another..."
Therefore take to you now seven bullocks and seven rams, and go to my servant Job, and offer up for yourselves a burnt offering; and my servant Job shall pray for you: for him will I accept: lest I deal with you after your folly, in that you have not spoken of me the thing which is right, like my servant Job. (Job 42:8)
God told Eliphaz that he was angry with him and that he was to bring an offering and that JOB would pray for him. He and his friends did as they were told, and Job prayed for them and God accepted his prayer!
We all pray for ourselves far more than we pray for others! We tell people "I will pray for you", utter a short "Dear Lord, bless this person" or "Heavenly Father, guide this person" - but when we pray for ourselves, we fill it with each and every detail that we want God to hear. Job, who was blessed man and lived a righteous life, was tortured by Satan, yet found the strength to pray for others and continue to worship God! He never (almost, but not quite) accused God of being unjust and in the end, when God restores him, he lives on for another 140 years! He told God he was not worthy yet in that moment he was humbled!
I have a small binder that sits on my coffee table. In it are the names of the people I pray for every day. The obvious names (my father, my children, my ex-husband, his family, close friends and their families) are at the top of the first page, followed by church friends, childhood friends, neighbors, co-workers, Facebook friends and so on. I also have the prayer request list from my church. I know that I don't spend as much time in prayer for those names as I do for myself.
We've been told to "pray without ceasing" (1 Thes 5:17), we've been told to "pray one for another" (James 5:16) and we've been told to "stand perfect and complete in his will" (Col 4:12).
Intercessory prayer is the greatest tool that we possess! It allows us to go before God on behalf of someone else. To ask him to bless them, to comfort them, to heal them, to guide them! We already know that we are blessed and loved! We know that our perfect King will watch over us and protect us because we are his! He knows our heart (as he knows our name) - step out of the "ME" box and fill it with prayers for others! It is a blessing to be able to pray for someone other than ourselves - put yourself between your brothers or sisters and God! Go on THEIR behalf to the Lord and, like Job, you will not only hear the voice of God, but see his face as well!
(Women's Fall Retreat - 2010)