What prayer does God want to answer? Short answer: the one He wants you to pray! I know – it sounds like political double speak! But a clear, unmistakable truth is at the heart of the statement. And that truth connects us to the people pictured in this post.
Does God the Holy Spirit make intercession for us? He does! Just look at Romans 8:26. Can there be any disagreement between God the Father and God the Holy Spirit? No, there isn’t. So if the Holy Spirit prompts you to pray a specific thing, do you think God intends to answer that prayer?
Here are two experiences to illustrate the point. I was preaching a series of crusade services overseas. After one of the services, a young man waited to see me and asked me to pray for him. I asked him if he was a believer in Jesus Christ. He said he was not. I shared the Gospel with him. He listened but was not persuaded to believe at that moment. And I say at that moment because I am convinced he became a believer after our encounter. Why? Because of the prayer God wanted prayed!
Even though he didn’t respond to the Gospel invitation, I had promised to honor his request for prayer. He shared his concerns and I began to pray. At that moment there was an overwhelming sense within me to pray that God’s pursuing love would catch him.
The image in my mind was that very famous footage from the first Gulf War. The view on our TV screens was through the lens of the smart bomb that was headed to an Iraqi bridge. In the film was a car racing across that bridge. The bomb hit just behind the car. The news guys called the driver the luckiest man in Iraq. As I prayed I knew God was going to pursue this young man. And just like that missile found its target, God’s pursuing love always hits the heart of His target.
Prayer: Pursuing Purpose
The second experience is from routine, daily work. God often ‘shows up’ in the most unexpected ways and times. In this case, I had sent a USPS letter to our mailing list. In that letter I shared what has become a frequent prayer request: praying for divine favor. That prayer is rooted in Daniel 3.
God caused Daniel to find favor in the eyes of his captors. This ministry needs divine favor as we build volunteer teams,raise funds for mission work, and meet the opportunities to touch the lives of many (like those pictured here). I can’t cause people to look favorably on anything, much less this ministry. BUT, God can! And I am convinced Kingdom work often lacks a favorable view because we don’t ask for it! (see James 4:2 and Matthew 7:7)
Late in the day my phone rang. A young pastor friend was calling to tell me his church had concluded Vacation Bible School. That was important because they had decided to use the VBS mission offering to support this ministry. He told me to put it to work wherever it was most needed.
That was a blessing, but the biggest one was yet to come. We chatted a while before he asked if he could pray for me. I never pass that up! He began to pray. About half way through his prayer I heard him asking God to grant me and this ministry favor in the eyes and ears of people I see and talk to. That was God at work. My friend had no idea I had just mailed him a letter asking for that very prayer! It wasn’t in his mail box yet, but God was working and prompting the prayer He wanted to answer.
You see, if we listen we will hear the Spirit prompting us to pray the prayer God wants to answer. Let me invite you to join us in that prayer for God’s favor. It is needed for this ministry, people like you see on this page, and people we have yet to encounter. Why do I set this in terms of people? God’s mission is people and God’s method is people.
It’s people who pray, people who give, and people who go. And all of that is done so our Father can draw more people to Himself from every nation, tribe, and tongue! (see Revelation 5:9) And to that end, we remain committed to Equipping For Life. You can join hands with us HERE.
Soli Deo Gloria!