Walk into Your Breakthrough

12:05 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

One of my favorite singers is contemporary gospel vocalist and evangelist Beverly Crawford. When she sings, she ministers. When she sings, you can feel through her words, her voice. One of my favorite performances of hers is "Breakthrough." When I heard it a few years ago, it moved me.

It still moves me, and several times a month, I make sure I get in a quiet space and listen to it.

Let the words minister to you. It's a song that reminds us of God's promises and our need to hold onto faith, believe God's word, and wait until we see those words come to fruition in our BREAKTHROUGHS.

They are coming.

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Start Your Morning with a Hallelujah

12:05 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

Tuesday, I talked about Karen Clark Sheard's "Authority." Another song that I listen to in the morning is KCS's "Hallelujah." If you need a spark, if you need to be shaken, if you need that holy ghost dance... this is the song for you.

In this video below, KCS gives a good preach and delivers a rousing performance of "Hallelujah."

For me (and I know for others), it is so important to wake up and say... and declare positives for the day. To thank the Father for allowing us to live to see another day, to thank him for giving us another opportunity to shine in our lives for his benefit and our testimony.

This song will usher you into those moments of thankfulness.

Hallelujah!

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You're Next in Line for a Miracle

12:05 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

Sometimes, it sure doesn't feel like it, right? Bills stacked to the ceiling. Everywhere you turn, it seems a mishap, mistake, or missed opportunity presents itself. It's easy to fall into a space where you can't see the light, can't see that a miracle can even happen to us. Believe me, I know. I fight this, too.

One song that makes me smile, keeps my heart and mind focused when negativity threatens to overtake them is Mama Shirley Caesar's "You're Next in Line for a Miracle."

Take a listen...

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God Has Given Us Authority

12:05 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

Music often saves me. Even when I'm dead-center into some depression, anxiety, and fearful thoughts... even when I say that I'm mad at God or feel my faith waning, it is often music that helps to release those toxins.

When I'm in those periods stated above, I can often be heard walking around humming.

What am I humming?

Gospel music. Christian music.

When this happens, and I catch myself, I often laugh, shake my head, look up to the heavens, and say, "You surely got jokes, Father."

Because he does. Even in the middle of the crazy here on earth, there is still -- even if we don't feel it, see it, or believe it -- a still small voice within us, there is still the Father that's providing our push, giving us our strength, filling us with faith so that we can be mended, righted, and placed back on our path to move forward.

One song that I find myself humming every day (and one that I play just about every morning as I get ready for work) is Karen Clark Sheard's "Authority." It's a simple message, but the message is SO powerful. When I'm listening to it and moments after, I can feel the power surging in me. If only I could find a way to embed it into my DNA so that it never stops playing during those times of doubt.

Have a listen. Let it rejuvenate you today!

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Day 12 - God's Will and Ours

12:05 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

Day 12 of Andrew Murray's The Secret of Intercession poses the following question: Why must all our prayers of intercession be based on Christ's prayer, "Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven" (Matt. 6:10)?

Murray lays out the answer to this in a few short pages, but we get the answer in the first paragraph: "When He made man in His image, it was, above all, that man's desires were to be in perfect accord with the desires of God" .... "in the human flesh man was to be the embodiment and fulfillment of God's desires" (48).

In short order, Murray tells us that man's fall set God in doing "the great work of winning man back to make the desires of God his own" so that man could once again be in perfect accord with God (48).

Through Christ, that opportunity for perfect accord is at hand. "The Son, as man, said in agony and blood, 'Thy will be done,' and made the surrender even to the point of being forsaken by God. He did this so that the power that had deceived man might be conquered and deliverance procured" (49).

As followers... and as intercessors... "the great work of appropriating that redemption is this: that believers have to say, first of all for themselves and then in lives devoted to intercession for others, 'Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven' (Matt 6:10)" (49).

What some of us often find... and I'll be truthful... what I often find is that it's not hard to say Thy will be done for others. We pray for healing. We pray for increase for others, but we know that in the end, it is God's will that will be done. Now, when we move that will onto us, it can get a little scary because we truly have to realize that it's not about us. It's not our will that does anything. We surrender ourselves, we petition for ourselves and others, and God's will shall be done. For some, there is much peace, rest, and comfort found in that. For others, the fear of what will God's will be? lingers.

I think it's important that we step back to the beginning, seeing that 1) God made us in his image (and he is perfect -- shouldn't we be absolutely thrilled to be made in his image!?) and 2) because we are made in his image, we have a responsibility to set our desires right with him and his will.



Other Posts in The Secret of Intercession series
  1. "Kickstarting Intercession"
  2. "Day 1 - Intercession"
  3. "Day 2 - The Opening of the Eyes"
  4. "Day 3 - Man's Place in God's Plan"
  5. "Day 4 - Intercession in the Plan of Redemption"
  6. "Day 5 - God Seeks Intercessors"
  7. "Day 6 - Christ as Intercessor"
  8. "Day 7 - The Intercessors God Seeks"
  9. "Day 8 - The School of Intercession"
  10. "Day 9 - The Power in the Name of Jesus"
  11. "Day 10 - Prayer, the Work of the Spirit"
  12. "Day 11 - Christ, Our Example in Intercession"

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Day 11 - Christ, Our Example in Intercession

12:05 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

I have to say that I come to Day 11 of Andrew Murray's The Secret of Intercession with some major trepidation.

And it's all for fleshy reasons. With some of the heartbreaking goings on in the world these days, it's been hard for me to think Christlike. It's been hard for me to pray for some transgressors.

And that's unfortunate considering this is a vital staple of being an intercessor. It's easy to pray for those we love, those who aim to do right and walk good, giving, loving paths.

It's not so easy to do that for those who commit heinous crimes, those who might do any number of things we deem wrong.

A few months ago, a major altercation presented itself directly where I live, and it left me shaken, scared, angry, and full of rage. After the tears washed away some of the fear, what was left was this vigilante that wanted to rip and run the streets, find the person that had shaken my world terribly, and take. him. down.

Sometimes, even now, when my mind chooses to flash back to that, those violent, angry thoughts come rushing back, too.

It wasn't until I talked with a pastor friend of mine that I found myself somewhat humbled by my previous thoughts.

After she let me get all my feelings out, all the snot and tears, she said, "May I pray..."

"Yes," I interrupted.

"...for him?" she finished.

Now, knowing this strong prayer warrior and lover of God, I was not shocked by her question. The situation I was in, the mind frame I was in, made me shocked by what she asked.

"Yes," I muttered, not really wanting to hear her prayer.

But I listened.

Her act of prayer showed what it means for us when we choose to pray for the transgressors.

That we, too, yield ourselves wholly to the glory of the holiness and the love of the Father. Therefore, we can also say, "Your will be done, cost what it may, that we, too, will sacrifice ourselves, even to the pouring out of our souls unto death". (Murray 45)

With intercession, we are in a partnership with Christ. As such, our minds here on earth as intercessors must be in one accord with Christ in heaven.

We must have only one aim in life: that we should love the Father and the lost by consecrating our lives to intercession for God's blessing. The burning desire of Father and Son for the salvation of souls must be the burning desire of our hearts, too. (45)

Murray concludes this chapter by asking, In Christ's ultimate sacrifice of Himself, He demonstrated His great love for sinners. How can we, as His followers, show our love for those who are lost in this world?

I think the previous paragraph does a great in answering this question.

Being God-focused and Christ-focused is essential. If we can stay rooted in them, we can be walking, talking embodiments of them here on earth. With them within us, we are more likely to pray for those who are lost, more likely to listen to those who are lost, more likely to comfort those who are lost, and more likely to walk, talk, and live in a way that shines God and Jesus to all we come in contact with. And sometimes, even just that is enough. It's not about beating people into submission and making them fall in line. Our words and our actions to live a good Godly life can move others to want to follow Jesus and work on their lives in a way so that they are in accord with him.

While on Facebook, a short message from Joel Osteen came across my newsfeed; I don't find it coincidental considering I was working on this post at the time. I think it does a good job in succinctly stating what we are to do:

Your job is not to judge. Your job is not to figure out if someone deserves something. Your job is to lift the fallen, to restore the broken, and to heal the hurting.


Other Posts in The Secret of Intercession series
  1. "Kickstarting Intercession"
  2. "Day 1 - Intercession"
  3. "Day 2 - The Opening of the Eyes"
  4. "Day 3 - Man's Place in God's Plan"
  5. "Day 4 - Intercession in the Plan of Redemption"
  6. "Day 5 - God Seeks Intercessors"
  7. "Day 6 - Christ as Intercessor"
  8. "Day 7 - The Intercessors God Seeks"
  9. "Day 8 - The School of Intercession"
  10. "Day 9 - The Power in the Name of Jesus"
  11. "Day 10 - Prayer, the Work of the Spirit"

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Day 10 - Prayer, the Work of the Spirit

12:05 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

In day 10 of Andrew Murray's book, The Secret of Intercession, he concludes with the following question: Why is it essential to be filled with the Holy Spirit before you can be an intercessor?

Day 10 speaks specifically about this question.

Murray starts the day with the words "Abba, Father," using them to tell us what the words meant when coming from Christ's mouth while in Gethsemane: "it was the entire surrender of Himself, even to death, so that the holy will of God's love in redemption of sinners might be accomplished" (40). Through his total surrender, through this short, yet poignant prayer, Christ "exercises the wonderful power of intercession and the power to pour down the Holy Spirit" (40). So, from the start, we see that "The Holy Spirit has been bestowed by the Father to breathe the very spirit of His Son into our hearts" (40).

Christ surrendered his all, even his life, for our lives, our souls.

And, as intercessors, this is what we are to do, too: surrender our all.

Some may see all that Christ had to endure and all that he gave and sacrificed and think, How am I supposed to do that? I'm not Christ.

This is where the answer to the above question is revealed as "the Holy Spirit is actually given into our hearts so that we may pray as Jesus did in His power and in His name" (41).

Murray continues with

It is the man who yields himself wholly to the leading of the Holy Spirit who will feel urged, by the compulsion of a divine love, toward undivided surrender to a life of continual intercession because he knows that it is God who is working in him. (41)

And he concludes with

Now we understand how God can give such a high place to intercession in the fulfillment of His purpose of redemption: it is the Holy Spirit who breathes God's own desire into us and enables us to intercede for souls. (41)

As I read this chapter of Murray's book, I had to chuckle because it is so timely, especially with the goings on of my life.

I've been in a bad bout of depression over the last several weeks (months, if I'm being honest), and over the last week or two, I have found myself closed in within myself, not doing a lot of praying, talking to God, feeling the Spirit... nothing. Just today, I began thinking about how much I need it, how much it all does matter to me in body, mind, and spirit, and I asked aloud, to no one in particular, "How do I stay girded up through life's situations and difficulties so that I can continue to be that prayer warrior I need to be?"

This chapter didn't answer that for me, but it does make me realize that there is a lot of work and a lot expected from us to be these prayer warriors. When we shut down, when we're depressed, when we're unfocused, when we're not keeping the lines between us and above open; we clog up our prayer line and our ability to see and to feel what we are to do: be watchmen and pray for others' souls.

I'm still in the midst of the depression, and I'm fighting hard to scratch and climb out of it, and I know this because I asked that question about how to stay girded up against those things that threaten to overthrow me.

Music often soothes me and helps to alleviate the worries and fears that block me. Reading (and sometimes forcing self to read when the depression tries to lock down on me) scripture helps. Actually standing up, walking about a room and talking (and sometimes yelling and screaming and shrieking and crying) to God aloud is usually the most effective way for me to, as they say, lay those burdens down so that I can be that prayer warrior I need to be. Another thing I do is remember.

Remember what?

All the times I've prayed for others (or for self) and answers were received. I think this one is extremely important. When we're caught up in drama and fog and pain, sometimes, it's hard to look behind us and see the bright spots in our path. But they are there, and we have to document them because if we believe that God is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow, then we have to also believe that if he answered a prayer once, he'll do it again.


Other Posts in The Secret of Intercession series
  1. "Kickstarting Intercession"
  2. "Day 1 - Intercession"
  3. "Day 2 - The Opening of the Eyes"
  4. "Day 3 - Man's Place in God's Plan"
  5. "Day 4 - Intercession in the Plan of Redemption"
  6. "Day 5 - God Seeks Intercessors"
  7. "Day 6 - Christ as Intercessor"
  8. "Day 7 - The Intercessors God Seeks"
  9. "Day 8 - The School of Intercession"
  10. "Day 9 - The Power in the Name of Jesus"

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Day 9 - The Power in the Name of Jesus

6:18 PM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

Hitherto have ye asked nothing in my name: ask, and ye shall receive, that your joy may be full....At that day ye shall ask in my name. - John 16:24, 26


Day 9 of Murray's book, The Secret of Intercession, focuses on the importance of our connection to Jesus Christ and the power that resides in that connection.

Murray asserts that many Christians do not see the full understanding of what Christ says in the passage above:

... there is such a lack of knowledge of their oneness with Christ Jesus, and of the Holy Spirit as the Spirit of prayer, that they do not even attempt to claim the wonderful promises Christ gives here. (36-37)

But what brings that understanding is FAITH, "faith in the power of Jesus' name and in our right to use it that will give us the courage to follow on when God invites us to the holy office of intercessor" (37).

In this short chapter, Murray concludes by saying that when Christians have this faith and understanding, when they know Jesus' name has power, and they know they have the right to use it, and they know that using it in prayers will bring answers, then they will be in the midst of living a healthy spiritual life:

Oh, if Christians but knew what it is to yield themselves wholly and absolutely to Jesus Christ and His service, how their eyes would be opened to see that intense and unceasing prayerfulness is the essential mark of the healthy spiritual life. (37)

At the end of Day 9, Murray poses the question: How is being an intercessor indicative of having a healthy spiritual life?

Murray defines intercession as essentially when a man is bold and asks from God what he desires for others. As intercessors, we are to pour out our souls, give of ourselves, which is the divine meaning of intercession. Intercession is, if you will, a lifestyle. It is not a hobby. It is a way of being that is ingrained in you and becomes as important as the air you breathe. Intercession also, as Day 9 suggests, requires you to have faith in Jesus' power, in your ability to use that power, and in the belief that answers will be given to what you ask for. Important to these last points comes our abiding in Jesus, our yielding "wholly and absolutely to Jesus Christ and His service."

With our chief position on earth as intercessors, which God sees as the strongest power of man according to Murray, we are living a life in which day or night, we are ever vigilant to God's causes and his children. We cry out for others. We give of ourselves in order for God's mercy and grace to fall upon his children. When our lives are aligned with the most powerful work we can do for the "church," when we become the intercessors for one another through the power of Jesus Christ just as Jesus is The Intercessor for us, it's not difficult to see how we move toward having healthy spiritual lives.


Other Posts in The Secret of Intercession series
  1. "Kickstarting Intercession"
  2. "Day 1 - Intercession"
  3. "Day 2 - The Opening of the Eyes"
  4. "Day 3 - Man's Place in God's Plan"
  5. "Day 4 - Intercession in the Plan of Redemption"
  6. "Day 5 - God Seeks Intercessors"
  7. "Day 6 - Christ as Intercessor"
  8. "Day 7 - The Intercessors God Seeks"
  9. "Day 8 - The School of Intercession"

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Turning Bad News into a Positive Move for Change

12:30 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

I received some news today.

The stage was set for it three weeks ago, and today confirmed it.

I have diabetes.

Out of all illnesses you can get, diabetes has been #1 on my Please, Dear God, not that list my whole life. I've had great aunts and uncles that had it and saw some of the more extreme effects of it, and wanted nothing to do with it, ever.

Three weeks ago, blood work results came back. Sugar was pretty high. My doctor decided to schedule more blood work within a two to three-week span of time.

I had that done this past Friday.

Today, after smiling and talking with my bestie about my good talk with my dissertation chair, after declaring the completion of my dissertation, after excitedly telling bestie of new writing project; the call came.

About the norm in a roller coaster life in which at 1:59 you can be on Cloudy Infinity and at 1:59:10, you can hear the thud and the crack of bones as you fall back to earth.

Doctor told me the number was lower, but that didn't negate the fact that I had diabetes. She told me she was putting in a prescription... and that I would need to start monitoring my blood sugar and we'd talk more about that this week.

Three weeks ago, when I learned my sugar was high, as soon as the doctor informed me and then stepped out the room to get something, I cried and got depressed. I've been lamenting over this ever since. So, I've had my time for the pity party.

Today, I wasn't crying. I wasn't depressed. After telling my mom, then venting and laughing with her, I told her, "You know, I think this is the last argument for change." When she asked me what I meant, I told her that for years God has told me I needed to change. I needed a Change Overhaul, if you will. I'd been wanting to focus on my own writing for the longest, but never made the change. I had wanted to add a component to the work I do as editor, but never made the change. I had wanted to exercise more, but never fully made the change. I had wanted to eat less, but I'm an emotional eater and found food, my entire life, to be my #1 comfort, so I never made the change. I could keep going; there is a list of things I should have been changed, but for whatever reasons I managed to fashion in this head of mine, I never did them.

And now... this news has given me a wake-up call.

So many necessary changes will come, hell, have started already, and all of them will lead to a better, healthier, happier me.

Instead of focusing on the illness and having weekly pity parties about it, I choose to roll up my sleeves and dig in to this thing I call my life and restructure, restrengthen, and renew it so that I'm here for the very long haul.

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Day 8 - The School of Intercession

12:05 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

In Day 8 of Murray's book, The Secret of Intercession, he seems ready to take us to school on what we need to give if we are to be the partners of Christ on earth in intercession.

What are we to give? He shows us what Jesus gave up by quoting Isaiah 53:10-12: "When thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed....He shall see of the travail of his soul....Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great...because he hath poured out his soul unto death."

In this passage, we see soul mentioned three times. This is important to note because for Murray, "the pouring out of the soul -- that is the divine meaning of intercession" (33), and because Jesus gave "Himself over to live and die that He might save the perishing was a revelation of the spirit that has power to prevail with God" (34).

Because Jesus is the example for us, and he poured out his soul, gave of himself for others, as intercessors, this is what we are to do as well.

If we as helps and fellow laborers with the Lord Jesus are to share His power of intercession, there will need to be with us as well the travail of soul that there was with Him, the giving up of our lives and their pleasures for the one supreme work of interceding for our fellowmen. (34)
For Murray, those that come to intercession should not do so if they see it as a hobby, as a mere interest. There needs to be an intense desire, above all other things, to live this way: "it is a life of consecration and self-sacrifice that will indeed give power for intercession" (34).

Murray concludes the day with the following question: What is the cost of being an intercessor, and what are its rewards?

The cost, as Murray points out and repeats in this short section, is our souls, our burning desire to intercede for others. It costs our time. It costs our hearts. It costs our minds. It costs our breaths. And I list these things, and it's unnecessary to do so because just to say "we give up our souls" is more than enough.

Intercession becomes almost a habit to us because it is so ingrained into who we are. We see hurt, we see trouble, we see the warnings... as those watchmen from Day 7's post... and we are called into action to intercede. We don't sit and think about why we're doing it or if we really want to do it; we just do it.

I think about times in the past when I would be in bed in a deep sleep and out of nowhere, a call to pray would be dropped into my spirit, and I would wake up, crusty eyes and all, and kneel beside my bed and pray, with the words needed to pray coming out my mouth. There'd be times where I would be sitting, reading or studying or writing and an overwhelming feeling would touch my heart in such a way that I felt the trouble and or pain or another, and I would have to stop what I was doing and pray. Sometimes, I'd be made aware of who I was praying for, but many times, I wasn't. In the last couple of years, these moments have waned, and I'm working hard in my prayer life, in my talks with Daddy, to get myself back aligned to be that prayer warrior.

Why? I think this is where the rewards come in. Some might see "the giving up of our lives and their pleasures" as a "Whoa, hold on just one minute" issue. After all, why am I giving up me and my pleasures for others? Murray calls interceding for others "the one supreme work." Supreme means superior to all others. For me, one reward is knowing that I'm standing right alongside my Lord and Savior in doing the most important work I can do. Jesus gave up his life for me, and through him, I can do all things. Not only did he give up his life for me, but he gave me more than just my life? He gave me the ability to do all things through him because he strengthens me. How could I not want to follow him and do as he does, too? So, part of the reward for me is giving back because so much was giving to me through Jesus.

Another reward is that by interceding and seeing those prayers fulfilled, we strengthen the body of the church, we strengthen our communities, states, countries, the entire world.

Another reward for me derives from Galatians 6:7: "Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap." If we sow petitions to God for our fellowmen in the hope that these prayers are fulfilled, then won't we reap fulfilled prayers as well. When someone's in need, and I pray or I give, I'm not thinking, Ooh, I can't wait to get a reward from God, but it's not a coincidence that when we help someone in despair, when we fervently pray for others, when we give despite that meaning we might not have enough for ourselves, God always comes through to make sure we have more than enough.

For me, intercession feels like a win-megawin situation. I win because I get to partner with Jesus for my fellow men and women, and I megawin because through my work, my life is sustained and my blessings overflow.

Other Posts in The Secret of Intercession series
  1. "Kickstarting Intercession"
  2. "Day 1 - Intercession"
  3. "Day 2 - The Opening of the Eyes"
  4. "Day 3 - Man's Place in God's Plan"
  5. "Day 4 - Intercession in the Plan of Redemption"
  6. "Day 5 - God Seeks Intercessors"
  7. "Day 6 - Christ as Intercessor"
  8. Day 7 - The Intercessors God Seeks

0 comments:

Day 7 - The Intercessors God Seeks

2:26 PM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

In Day 7 of Murray's book, The Secret of Intercession, he compares watchmen to intercessors.

The watchmen warn men of impending danger... and call to God when they need his help with a threatening enemy. In tying the watchmen to the intercessor, he says, "The great mark of the intercessors is that they are not to hold their peace day or night, are to take no rest, and are to give God no rest, until the deliverance comes" (29).

"Shall not God avenge his own elect, which cry day and night unto him" (Luke 18:7).

After a short commentary about the need for more intercessors, the need to have a united, fervent community of intercessors to ignite the power of the Holy Spirit, Murray asks, "Will you not, dear reader, offer yourself to God for this blessed work of intercession and learn to count it as the highest privilege of your life to be a channel through whose prayers God's blessing can be brought down to earth?" (30)

With every "day," Murray concludes with a question to journal on. This day's question is How is being an intercessor similar to being a watchman?

Watchmen, day and night, watch over their appointed city and warn of danger and seek God's help when danger approaches.

Intercessors do the same. They are forever diligent and on watch to warn others of dangers and to seek God when danger approaches. Murray states, "Watchmen are ordinarily placed on the walls of a city to give notice to the rulers of coming danger" (29). Notice, it doesn't say these watchmen are placed outside their own homes. No, they are at the walls of the city, a city occupied by many people, so they are not only looking out for their own welfare but also the welfare of the city's people.

This is how intercessory works, too. Intercessors are on the lookout for danger that affects people, not just self. They lift their voices to God to aid in helping people when danger approaches them. They do this without ceasing. They do this with the same passion, conviction that they would do if the danger was approaching them.

And in a way, the danger is approaching them: their blood, the blood of one of God's children, one of their brothers... or sisters.

They say it takes a village to raise a child. I believe it takes a village of fervent, dedicated prayer warriors, staunched in their faith, to raise ALL OF US to the supernatural blessings and gifts that the Father has for us.

And these are the types of intercessors God seeks.


Other Posts in The Secret of Intercession series

  1. "Kickstarting Intercession"
  2. "Day 1 - Intercession"
  3. "Day 2 - The Opening of the Eyes"
  4. "Day 3 - Man's Place in God's Plan"
  5. "Day 4 - Intercession in the Plan of Redemption"
  6. "Day 5 - God Seeks Intercessors"
  7. "Day 6 - Christ as Intercessor"

0 comments:

Day 6 - Christ as Intercessor

5:42 PM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

Some time ago, I began posting on Andrew Murray's book, The Secret of Intercession (you can click the cover to learn more about the book).


The book contains 31 chapters, each chapter constituting a "day." In each day, Murray highlights a facet of intercession: what it is, why it's important, and how we are to come to it, among others. I posted on days one through five previously, and those links are below.

Today, I'm talking on Day 6, "Christ as Intercessor."

In this short chapter, Christ is called the true Intercessor as "God Himself would provide the true Intercessor, in Christ His Son, of whom it had already been said, 'He bare the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors'" (Isa. 53:12; Murray 25).

Murray provides other places in the bible where Jesus intercedes for man (John 17; Luke 22:32) before concluding with the most poignant prayer from Jesus to God - "Father, forgive them" (Luke 23:34) as Jesus was on the cross (Murray 26).

With Jesus "seated at God's right hand," Murray states that Jesus is still the true Intercessor and still prays without ceasing. Now, however, we are invited to do so with him. We have that power to do the work of intercession.

They [People] would learn in faith to pray in His name. He would present their petition to the Father, and through His and their united intercession, the church would be clothed with the power of the Spirit. (26)

In all of the chapters in The Secret of Intercession, Murray concludes with a question and some space for you to journal your thoughts. He concludes Day 6 with the following question: How did Jesus model the life of an intercessor while He was here on earth?

Murray says a few things about intercession in Day 1:

"But the glory of intercession is so much greater--when a man is bold and asks from God what he desires for others" (7).

"It is the power of being used by God as instruments for His great work of making men His habitation and showing forth His glory" (8).

It is when Christians cease from looking for help in external union and aim at being bound together to the throne of God by an unceasing devotion to Jesus Christ, and an unceasing continuance in supplication for the power of God's Spirit, that the church will put on her beautiful garments and put on her strength, too, and overcome the world. (9)

So, for me, in answering the above question, I reply, as Murray states, that Jesus is the true Intercessor. In his short time on earth, he was the ultimate mediator, prayer warrior for God, petitioning to God to give us mercy and lovingkindness. Even on the cross, he prayed for God to forgive man, for "they know not what they do" (Luke 23:34).

When Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego were sent to burn because they refused to worship a gold image that Nebuchadnezzar had created, the trio did not burn. The trio showed no fear in their beliefs and convictions, and their faith in God kept them from believing that God would allow them to perish. In Daniel 3:25, it reads: "Look!" he [Nebuchadnezzar] answered, "I see four men, too, walking in the middle of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the fourth is like the Son of God." Every time I read this story and read these words, I get excited, happy, and feel blessed because this story illustrates to me God's love for us through his son. Jesus is our mediator. He petitions for our forgiveness, our mercy, our grace, our favor, our blessings.

He is not one-sided in these actions; his love transcends hate. He prayers of forgiveness for the very men who killed him illustrates this.

As I look more into intercession and its importance in my life, these reflections of Jesus' works tell me that this is what us intercessors are to do, too. We are to be equal-opportunity prayer warriors, not handpicking who to pray for, but praying for all, fervently, continuously, with our full hearts.


Other Posts in The Secret of Intercession series


  1. "Kickstarting Intercession"
  2. "Day 1 - Intercession"
  3. "Day 2 - The Opening of the Eyes"
  4. "Day 3 - Man's Place in God's Plan"
  5. "Day 4 - Intercession in the Plan of Redemption"
  6. "Day 5 - God Seeks Intercessors"

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Prayer: Pruning

4:32 PM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

Dear Lord, continue to prune me so that I can continue to grow stronger, so that I can bear sweeter fruits.


“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. 2 Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit He takes away;[a] and every branch that bears fruit He prunes, that it may bear more fruit. 3 You are already clean because of the word which I have spoken to you. 4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in Me.

5 “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. 6 If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered; and they gather them and throw them into the fire, and they are burned. 7 If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will[b] ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you. 8 By this My Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit; so you will be My disciples (John 15:1-8, NKJV).

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A Good Word: Temporary Provisions

6:00 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

From Joel Osteen: Don't live off temporary provision. ... Continually be willing to make adjustments.

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A Good Word: Vision & Provision

6:00 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

From Joel Osteen: God never gives a vision without making provision.

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A Prayer: Not My Battle

6:00 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

Lord God, I will remember that the battle is not mine; it belongs to you. I will have faith in all your ways and what you will do in my life, and as troubles arise, I will look to you for guidance, give you the troubles, and continue to move forward in the path you set before me.

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A Prayer: Your Ways

11:00 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

Lord God, I will not put you in a box. I trust your ways and know that they are not my ways.


From Joel Osteen's "Finished with Fear" Collection: If the only way you're going to be happy is if it happens your way, you're setting yourself up for disappointment.

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Tell What the Lord Has Done for You

6:00 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

"Death and life are in the power of the tongue" (Prov. 18:21).

If this is so, then it would seem we'd want to say all things life-affirming, right? Yet, we often do more complaining and lamenting than praising and speaking of positive things.

People often tell me to be careful with what I say because "You'll speak things into existence."

Well, I want to speak things into existence; I want to speak all the wonderful things that God has done for me and all the things he will do for me. We should want to do this, right? NEED to do this if our words have power.

If we talk about all the great things the Lord has done for us, then more great things will occur.

Peter and John, in Acts 4, refused to stop saying all the wonderful things that the Lord had done for them and was arrested for it. But that didn't deter them; they continued speaking of the Lord, his wonderful blessings and goodness. 

18 So they called them and commanded them not to speak at all nor teach in the name of Jesus. 19 But Peter and John answered and said to them, “Whether it is right in the sight of God to listen to you more than to God, you judge. 20 For we cannot but speak the things which we have seen and heard.” 21 So when they had further threatened them, they let them go, finding no way of punishing them, because of the people, since they all glorified God for what had been done (Acts 4:18-21).

Opposition will always occur, but it will be the strength of our convictions -- what we believe, how we act out this belief, and how we speak of this belief -- that will keep us close to the Lord and keep him showing us his mercy, grace, and lovingkindness.

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In the Fire with the Son of God

11:00 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

I know what it's like to be in the fire, to be in those harrowing situations where you just know that nothing will ever be right again, and for a long time, I continued to believe that nothing would ever be right.

But the Lord meets us in the fire. He's always with us, so why wouldn't he be in the fire, too? Nothing's too hot for him.

Some of our most fiery moments come when we hold fast to our faith and our beliefs and find ourselves condemned for it.

Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego are great examples of how the Lord not only comforts but also rewards those who stay steadfast to their faith.

When they refused to worship a gold image that Nebuchadnezzar created, they were put in a fire seven times hotter than any fires created to burn those who refused to worship.

But they did not burn. No.

"Look!" he [Nebuchadnezzar] answered, "I see four men, too, walking in the midst of the fire; and they are not hurt, and the fourth is like the Son of God" (Daniel 3:25).

Not long after calling the trio out of the fire, the king promoted the men.

When you keep the truth, that God is always in control, close to your heart and mind and live by it, you will be saved by the Lord... and promoted for being a good, faithful servant.

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SHOW Faith

6:00 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

When a group of lepers came upon Jesus, they asked him to have mercy on them. Instead of fixing them right on the spot, he wanted them to do something to show their faith. He told them to go to a priest and they would be healed.

As they turned and began their trek to a priest, the healing process began. By the time they reached a priest, they were completely healed.

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Declaration: Eyes on God

9:00 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

Lord God, I choose to keep my eyes on YOU and not my circumstances!

The paralytic man from Mark 2 could have accepted his perceived fate and stayed in his bed all the days of his life, but instead, he did not dwell on his circumstances; he stayed focus on getting himself to the Lord, and "When Jesus saw their faith, He said to the paralytic, 'Son, your sins are forgiven you'" (Mark 2:5) . . . "He said to the paralytic, 'I say to you arise, take up your bed, and go to your house.' Immediately, he arose, took up the bed, and went out in the presence of them all, so that all were amazed and glorified God, saying, 'We never saw anything like this!'" (Mark 2:10-12).

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Demonstrated, Visible Faith

6:00 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

One of my favorite lines from the bible comes from James 2:14-26, NKJV: "For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also."

We need to have faith, the belief, the trust, the confidence, that God has us and is and will provide for us, but we also need to demonstrate that faith. It's wonderful to pray, but God wants to SEE us in action, too.

If you've been struggling to lose weight and have been praying to God for the strength to do so, what are you doing to show your faith in the issue? You might cut your portions for one meal a day for starters, eventually cutting portions in all meals. You might start exercising ten minutes, three times a week for a week or two; then move to 15 minutes, three times a week; eventually moving up to 30 minutes for more than three times a week.

The point is by doing so, you are saying, I have faith in you and because I do, I am doing my part in this agreement between us.

In Mark 2:5, a paralyzed man had his friends take him to Jesus. They carried him in his bed to Jesus... and THEN, seeing so many people, decided to lower him from the roof into the place so that the man could get to Jesus. He had faith that Jesus could help him, so he acted on that faith and by any means necessary got himself to the Lord to receive that help.

What are you doing right now to act out your faith?

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Book Tour: Annie Brown, Author of Christian with Pervasive Issues

6:00 AM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments


About Annie Brown

Annie Brown is the mother of four adult children, five grandchildren, and one great grandchild. She is a licensed minister and social worker. As a social worker, Annie works the terminally ill, providing emotional support at the most critical time in an individual's life. It is Annie's desire that Christians work through their pervasive issues before the end of life, so that the transition between death and eternity can be smooth, and not cluttered with unresolved conflicts.

You can learning more about Annie through Outskirts Press Website, Twitter page, and Facebook page; you can also e-mail her if you'd like to share your thoughts on her book!


About Christians with Pervasive Issues

[Purchase Christians with Pervasive Issues at Amazon and Outskirts Press]

Even as a faithful Christian, there may be times when you feel that there is no hope of escaping issues and themes in your life that ensnare and trip you up time and time again. When a certain pattern of behavior or type of suffering has been following you all your life, it’s hard to believe that you can ever escape from it. Christians with Pervasive Issues shows us that every child of God can be delivered from issues that cause them to be a victim, rather than walking in victory. In compassionate, no-nonsense language, Annie Brown demonstrates that with genuine repentance, using God’s principles, and the right counseling/support, you can overcome anything. Christians with Pervasive Issues gives you the ray of hope you need in order to heal your life, and get closer to God.


The Meaning of Pervasive Issues
I WAS GETTING ready for work and suddenly the words “Pervasive Issues” were dropped into my spirit. Can you imagine someone who is not normally a morning person having something so important to deal with? I could not even think of the meaning of “pervasive,” so I could not comprehend what was being said to me. I went on to work, but it did not leave me. I shared what had been dropped into my spirit with my co-worker who is an encourager. He gave me a push to pursue the message the Spirit was conveying, and to understand what God wanted me to write. I could not begin until I did some preliminary homework. I had to figure out what part of speech that “pervasive” was. “Pervasive” is an adjective, which served as a modifier to the noun (issue). Merriam-Webster Dictionary defined it as “spreading through every part.” If an issue is pervasive, it permeates the whole of something. Pervasive issues need to be dealt with within the Body of Christ.


An Excerpt from Christians with Pervasive Issues

A Remedy to Get to the Root of the Problem
WHAT IS NEEDED is that the people of God “must” clean out their secret compartments and confess that they need the Lord to deliver them. Confession is made unto salvation (deliverance). If we confess our faults, the Lord is faithful in forgiving us. You may ask, “Why do I have to confess if I was not responsible for what happened to me?”

The issue then becomes whether you have forgiven the person that caused me this harm. If there is no forgiveness, then you become a victim twice: a victim of circumstance, and a victim of bondage. This can be in some ways more dangerous than cancer. This will always be eating away at you. With cancer, at least you know what is going on in your body. Being a victim of circumstance and having an unforgiving heart bring torment. This torment becomes a part of you in such a way that it eats through your mind, destroys your inner peace, and puts your soul in jeopardy because it becomes a heart matter of sin.

Recognizing There Is a Need
EVERY INDIVIDUAL IN the Body of Christ has strengths and needs. Most times the two words strength and weakness are used to describe parts of your abilities to cope. I like the word needs instead of weakness, because weakness denotes that I just cannot help it.

However, the word need helps me to understand that I am insufficient within myself to furnish the supply. In other words, I don’t have what it takes to get this matter taken care of and I “need” help. Help, Lord! The Word of God has declared that God will supply all of our needs according to His riches in glory. Denying our helplessness and unwillingness to take the need to God only prolongs getting deliverance and healing. The Lord revealed that the Body of Christ was compared to harvest time when it is gone and the people are left in dire need.

Let us look at Jeremiah 8:20, which stated, “The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved [delivered].”

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lesson learned: rest completely on the father

4:11 PM Shonell Bacon 0 Comments

(even if my brain needs to get on board): release fear. release worry. release every negative thing (physical and mental) that threatens to drown you, and rest, rest fully, rest completely on the father because he never fails, and he will fight the battles as long as you keep moving forward and keep doing what HE tells you, not the world, not your mind, not your emotions, not your circumstances.

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