The Power of Prayer is a gift and mystery. With Jesus as our example of prayer, we have much to learn!
Today, we’ll look at God’s House of Prayer. Notably, God referred to His Temple as a House of Prayer. Post resurrection, God’s Temple became Christ (John 2:19) and after His ascension, the Temple on earth became Christ followers (1 Corinthians 6:19). Therefore, you and me, as believers, are invited to pray and to pray for all nations.
Given our design and charge, let’s look at a few examples of prayer: praying for the nation, praying the Lord’s prayer, praying for peace, and praying revelation.
Therefore He is able, once and forever, to save those who come to God through Him. He lives forever to intercede with God on their behalf.
Hebrews 7:25 NLT
PRAYING FOR THE NATION
In the United States, prayer has been a foundation since the beginning. In fact, the National Day of Prayer, which takes place this Thursday, May 3rd, was established in 1952 after about 200 years of foundational prayer for what would become the United States of America. The National Day of Prayer pagehas a rich history of prayer in America as well as other resources about how to pray, where to pray, and how to get involved in National Day of Prayer.
I can only imagine what God has prepared for May 3rd this year. The emphasis this year is “unity,” a theme which is very close to our hearts at C3. Moreover, the power of faithful prayers prayed by believers across the nation is exponentially limitless!
For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them.
PRAYING THE LORD’S PRAYER
This month, I challenge you to take a fresh look at Matthew 6, the Lord’s Prayer. You may know this prayer by heart, but is the prayer written on your heart (Deuteronomy 11:18, Proverbs 7:3)?
Even now, spend a moment with this prayer, read through it a few times and let the Holy Spirit emphasize something special that’s just for you.
Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil, Amen.
PRAYING FOR PEACE
When we pray for peace, in one sense we are inviting Jesus into our circumstance. After all, Jesus is called the Prince of Peace (Isaiah 9:6, Psalm 22:3) which makes those who pray in His name heirs of peace.
In another way, scripture invites us to pray for peace. Specifically, Psalm 122 invites us to pray for the peace of Jerusalem.
Pray for peace in Jerusalem. May all who love this city prosper.
Jerusalem is a real-live, active city in Israel. It’s on the map and is a hearty 6000+ miles away from the Carolinas. Jerusalem means City of Peace and is the heritage of Kingdom believers (Matthew 5:14, Galatians 4:26, Revelation 3:12).
Yet, as much as we may pray for Jerusalem. I was recently encouraged by a friend (Grant Schuchmann, Member of the City Servants, Cincinnati) to pray Jerusalem itself. Grant explained that Jerusalem (as we know it) comes from the Hebrew word yerushalayim. This term has two roots in it. (1) Yeru and (2) Shalayim. Yeru refers to Yahweh Yireh which means “God will provide.” Shalayim refers to Jehovah Shalom which means “God is peace.” Combined, when we pray Jerusalem, we are actually praying for God’s provision of peace! In that, start to pray Jerusalem over yourself, your family, your community, your city, our nation, and our world.
As I was preparing to write this blog, God gave me a vision in prayer. In the vision, I saw a prism. The prism was pure crystal and as God’s children prayed, their prayers, like light, went into the prism. Once they did, the prayers were refracted into the atmosphere with great light and every color was present. The range of the refraction was further, higher, and greater than I could naturally see. As I asked the Holy Spirit to interpret the vision, it became clear that as we pray, Jesus, the pure and spotless lamb, our royal intercessor and high priest, full of shekhinah glory (שׁכִינה – God’s manifest presence) is like the prism. When we pray as one with Jesus, our prayers become light and color, they become power and promise, they become God’s presence manifest on the earth!
In the scope of light and color the prism produced, I was reminded of Joseph’s gift from his father, the coat of many colors. I believed that when we pray in the name of Jesus with a pure heart we position ourselves in the blessing of Joseph:
And of Joseph he said, “Blessed by the Lord be his land, with the choicest gifts of heaven above, and of the deep that crouches beneath, with the choicest fruits of the sun and the rich yield of the months, with the finest produce of the ancient mountains and the abundance of the everlasting hills, with the best gifts of the earth and its fullness and the favor of him who dwells in the bush. May these rest on the head of Joseph, on the pate of him who is prince among his brothers. A firstborn bull—he has majesty, and his horns are the horns of a wild ox; with them he shall gore the peoples, all of them, to the ends of the earth; they are the ten thousands of Ephraim, and they are the thousands of Manasseh.”
Deuteronomy 33: 13-17
Remember…in the House of Prayer, prayer becomes your blessing and the blessing of the nations.
Let my prayer be counted as incense before you, and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice! Psalm 141:2
And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel’s hand. Revelation 8:4