- Tuesday, April 03, 2012
“Intercessors have strategic assignments in their prayer closets. The prayer closet is like those ancient watchtowers. From there, they can scour ‘the spiritual horizon’ like air traffic controllers. They often sense spiritual things discerning the good from the bad, the welcome from the unwelcome. In prayer, God sometimes exposes the enemy’s plans and shows the intercessor ‘the cards that Satan is holding.’”
--Eddie and Alice Smith
If ever there was a need for watchful prayer, it is now! We need to be watchful, especially as we see major changes happening worldwide on a weekly basis. Many of us watch the daily news to see in the natural what is happening, but God wants us to watch and see spiritually what is occurring on the earth. It is time for all of us to get our lives in order before the Lord, become watchful in prayer, and find our position as God’s watchmen on the watchtower.
Intercessors are front-line soldiers.
They see into the distance, observe what is happening, and lean forward in prayer. Sometimes they see with eyes of discernment, and at other times they may see things way in advance. God gives them insight in order to intercede. The Greek word for “watch” means, “to be vigilant, wake, to be watchful.” Jim Goll, well-known author, speaker and intercessory leader, says:
"A watchman on the wall does many things. He carefully watches what is happening and alerts the community when good ambassadors approach the city. … A watchman also warns the city far in advance when an enemy approaches. He sounds an alarm to awaken the people because he knows ‘to forewarn them is to alert and arm them.’ Then they quickly can rally to take their stand on the wall against the enemy before he wrongfully tries to enter into the city.”
- What does watching mean for you personally?
- What does God want you to concentrate on during prayer and intercession?
- For what has He given you discernment or a burden?
It may be your school, neighborhood, city, nation, or a particular people group. This is where we need to watch and pray. When we see danger coming, we pray and ask others to pray. We cry out to God to bring salvation, deliverance and make His name known. We pray against evil intruding in the area where we are keeping watch. We say “no” to the powers of darkness in Jesus’ name. We pray for God’s peace instead of fear, for life instead of death, and for hope instead of hopelessness.
At the same time, all of us need to be on the alert and pray diligently for the nations. For many years we lived on a ship that brought the light of the Gospel to various nations. Every hour of every day watchmen had to be on duty. These watchmen kept alert to any possible dangers that might come toward our ship -- dangerous weather, thieves, fire, and other possible threats to our safety. During their watch, they stayed alert. They knew that being a watchman was a serious responsibility.
You and I must be vigilant as a watchman for our nation. Although we may get weary and tired, we have a responsibility. We are called to pray for our president, prime minister, or king. We are on watch. We read in Matthew 26:41,“Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing but the body is weak.” In Isaiah 62:6-7 the Bible speaks of watchmen on the walls of Jerusalem:
“I have posted watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem; they will never be silent day or night. You who call on the Lord, give yourselves no rest, and give him no rest till he establishes Jerusalem and makes her the praise of the earth.”
God is raising up watchmen in this hour because the need for day and night prayer for our cities is urgent. Let the following grip your heart. This is adapted from George Otis, Jr., the president and founder of the research group, the Sentinel, and the producer of the Transformation videos:
"If the church is the nation's best hope, it must be awakened from its slumber and fast. Revival must become an urgent priority, not just a theological or historical curiosity. Its promotion must become the task of every pulpit, its implementation the responsibility of every believer. For this to happen, desperate intercessors must prevail upon God to provoke within His people a deep and widespread dissatisfaction with the religious status quo.
The church needs godly shepherds who will resolutely refuse to downplay the urgency of the hour and the seriousness of the present condition. She requires committed prophets who will seize every opportunity to acknowledge with Ezekiel: ‘Our offenses and sins weigh us down, and we are wasting away because of them’ (Ezekiel 33:10). We have come to the point, both as individuals and as a church, where we can no longer coast on the momentum of past deeds and choices. Our relationship with God has become fallow, and it can only become fruitful again through true repentance and unreserved obedience.
In this unsettled hour, the eyes of the Lord are upon His people. Will He find faith in the earth? Will He find a hunger for His presence? Will He find a ready remnant through whom He can speak to the nations and their leaders? Let us press in to hear what the Spirit has to say to the church. If this requires us to suspend, at least temporarily, some of our most cherished routines -- let us seize the moment!”
You and I are in a serious spiritual war. Failing to take our post during these days of uncertainty could lead to serious consequences. We must be vigilant and not apathetic; we must be careful and not lax; we must watch with a serious gaze to hear and see all that God is saying and doing. Our families, our churches, our missionaries, and our nations are important.
If watchmen do not keep their post on a ship during serious weather conditions, it could mean the loss of the ship and every person on board. Remember the Titanic, which sank very quickly because the watchmen were not doing their job. Let’s learn to concentrate on prayer, listening with expectation, and seize the moment as we keep our watch. Let’s learn to be God’s watchmen.
Don't miss this powerful video about intercession: http://www.youtube.com/