A prayer warrior is an intercessor. To intercede is to intervene between two parties with a view of bringing reconciliation. We are all called to the ministry of reconciliation, between God and mankind. The role of a prayer warrior is to intermediate, mediate, interpose and to intervene.
The intervention part is the one that is most often highlighted when it comes to praying. God places and raises prayer warriors in certain places, for such a time as they are required. You will find out how Esther would be placed in a position for such a time as he would be required, or how Joseph was sent ahead of God’s people to Egypt, for such a time as he would be required.
The heart of a prayer warrior is one that is selfless, one that is close to that of God. “Break my heart for what breaks yours.” It is an ability to look at situations from beyond them and seeking what breaks the heart of the Lord in this situation. This will often involve being able to look beyond your patriotism, nationalism, worldview, and truly seek God’s view.
Often times God’s view is not in line with our view. Our view is built on our experiences and the communities that we may be a part of. Abraham did not see the error of his ways until God uprooted him from within his people.
I sought among you for one that would stand in the gap, and found none!
”I looked for someone among them who would build up the wall and stand before me in the gap on behalf of the land so I would not have to destroy it, but I found no one.”
This is one of the earliest recorded instances of the need of a ministry of intercession. A prayer warrior is one that stands among the people and steps out into the gap on their behalf. A prayer warrior is one that stands and says, Lord if you are looking for someone among us, I am available.
There was great value highlighted in prayer warriors as a ministry, in the story of Peter getting freed from prison. The scripture tells us that while he lay in prison, there were prayer warriors standing in the gap for him. They stood up for him at a time when he couldn’t stand for himself.
The selflessness of prayer, and lack of spotlight is what makes this the least manned ministry in the church today. There is no secret place of prophecy, or for preaching. There is a secret place for prayer, meeting with God alone. This is where miracles are birthed, where prayer warriors stand up for people who may never know they were stood up for. This is where you stand up for people who may not even appreciate that they were stood up for.
When Abraham interceded for Sodom and Gomorrah, this was for people who neither cared for Abraham nor the God to who he prayed to. The heart of God is always that of redemption, even when the people themselves do not want to be saved. The role of a prayer warrior is not be stand in judgement of sinner or praise of the righteous, but to call for God who cause it to rain on both the just and wicked.
Joseph as an intercessor
Intercession in practice is also a form of prayer. How do you stand up for a people who have conspired to destroy you? That is the heart of a prayer warrior. To truly say, Lord, forgive them for they know not what they do. A prayer warrior depends on the Lord and trusts in his sovereignty in all things. Joseph would have understood that there is a purpose for the pit, as there is one for the castle. Sovereignty also means accepting that “even if I get burned”.
Esther as a prayer warrior
Do you remember the queen Hadassah? Queen Esther was taken from her homeland as a slave, for God to lift her up from concubine to queen of the land. When she would finally find herself in a place of great comfort, in the palace, a need arose.
Intercession is seeing and reacting to needs that may have no implications to you at all. Granted they may have potential implications later, as may have been the case for queen Esther.
Her sacrifice was stepping away from the choicest of food, and other pleasures that she would have been afforded due to her position. The ones whom she fasted for would have been fairing much worse than she was in life.
Daniel as a prayer warrior
Daniel was also an incredible intercessor. He prayed 3 times a day. His response to the threat of prayer being removed from their midst was to pray! He understood the value of prayer, and refused to lose an audience with the Lord. This is the same sentiment that was shared by King David, “Take not your Holy Spirit!”
He interceded for the diviners
Granted Daniel’s life was also at stake. He lifted a prayer to the God of revelation, and he was heard.
He interceded for his people
Daniel’s Prayer for His People
9 In the first year of Darius the son of Ahasuerus, by descent a Mede, who was made king over the realm of the Chaldeans— 2 in the first year of his reign, I, Daniel, perceived in the books the number of years that, according to the word of the Lord to Jeremiah the prophet, must pass before the end of the desolations of Jerusalem, namely, seventy years.
3 Then I turned my face to the Lord God, seeking him by prayer and pleas for mercy with fasting and sackcloth and ashes. 4 I prayed to the Lord my God and made confession, saying, “O Lord, the great and awesome God, who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, 5 we have sinned and done wrong and acted wickedly and rebelled, turning aside from your commandments and rules. 6 We have not listened to your servants the prophets, who spoke in your name to our kings, our princes, and our fathers, and to all the people of the land.
Abraham prays for Sodom
Abraham was instrumental in seeking the heart of the Lord. Here was a man who was ready to give up his inheritance, his son, a gift from God. He was willing to forfeit a gift that he had waiting for for most of his life, because God asked that of him.
Intercession stems from a place of obedience. A place that acknowledges that we may not know what God is doing, or what he is doing, yet we bet on him regardless. The Hebrew boys who were thrown in the furnace said it best “Even if we get burned!”
When the Lord was on the brink of destroying Sodom, he told his friend Abraham. Abraham knew that this meant that the life of his nephew Lot, as well as his family would be at risk, so he interceded. He negotiated with the Lord. If he would find 45 righteous people in the city, would the Lord spare the city?
Intercession in practice today
What does it all look like in our day? We have more and more of a division due to a judgemental nature that the church has exhibited for so long. The power that Jesus had, which revolutionised evangelism was his relationship before redemption approach.
He used this with Zaccheus, who was shunned across the board. Instead of telling him where he was going wrong, or highlighting his sins, he ate with him. He gave him time of day. The bible tells us that Zaccheus, by virtue of meeting with the Lord, changed his ways.
Jesus would also use this same approach with the lady at the well. She was also widely shunned by her day’s church and community. Jesus knew all her sins, yet gave her time of day.
We that know the least are more judgemental and condemning that God, who knows and sees all. She left carrying these words, “Come and see a man who told me everything that I’ve ever done!” What report do you think she would have had had she met you? If you had known that she had been with all these men?
Prayer warriors are called to enhance that ministry of reconciliation that Paul spoke about. They are agents of change, catalysts of change in the realm of the spirit. Once that change occurs in the spiritual realm, it spills over into the physical realm.
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