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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