This post must begin with the mention of two standing prayer requests which are offered up much in the intercessions for another. The first can be traced to the following passage:
Jeremiah 24:7 “And I will give them an heart to know me, that I am the LORD: and they shall be my people, and I will be their God: for they shall return unto me with their whole heart.”
The standing prayer is that God would grant others “an heart to know him.” This applies both to unsaved contemporaries and those who have been born of the Spirit. In the case of one who is still lost, they are in need of a Savior and this requires the working of the Holy Spirit. (I’m still fascinated at the way the Lord brought me to a place of repentance in 1983.) For the saints, all of us are in need of a heart to know God on a deeper level. Seriously; how many of us truly esteem the word of his mouth more than our necessary food? (Job 23:12.) We’ll forgo bible study for a plethura of reasons, however we’ll never miss a meal. This isn’t a finger-pointing statement; I’ve been asking this of myself for months as my choices don’t always line up with the scripture “I have esteemed the words of his mouth more than my necessary food.”
This rabbit trail is heading way off course now, but how does God view the lifestyle of the average westernized saint? We heap to ourselves riches while our brethren in far away (and oftentimes hard to pronounce) lands are perishing daily from want? We raise up multi-million dollar entertaiment centers named after famous ministers wherein folks can learn how to enjoy their best life now, while anyone in North Korea caught preaching Jesus is put to death on the spot. (This is “not” an exaggeration) How does God, who knows the hearts of all and counts each of our steps view the choices that we make in our daily routine? We claim “I cannot wait to see Jesus” but our selection process often tells a different story. The judgment seat of Christ should be a sobering thought because everything is going to be revealed for what it is.
I John 3:3 “And every man that hath this hope in him purifieth himself, even as he is pure.”
The second standing prayer request for others can be identified by the following passage, and this is where our son, Matthew comes into play:
John 9:3 “Jesus answered Neither has this man sinnned, nor his parents: but that the works of God should be manifest in him.”
In praying for others, I often ask that the name of Jesus will be glorified in their lives. This is especially true for Matthew as I struggle to truly understand the scope of his situation. He was diagnosed with autism at the age of three. Since that time, the challenges have been increasingly profound as he has grown. . He is currently on a medication called “abilify” which I do not like because of the side effects, however, without it he is almost unmanageable at times. A few evenings ago, he overpowered three adults in our house during one of his rants. (We went tumbling like bowling pins.) This proneness to violent outbursts is ramping up and is now causing problems at school. He has injured teachers and come very close to injuring other students in his class. He’s only fifteen and is the same height as me, (5,7″) but he is as strong as an elephant.
On the morning of November 19, while dropping him off at his classroom, I learned that he had once again come unglued. The day before he had unexpectedly gone into a tantrum (for lack of a more descriptive word) and had pinned one of the assistants to the flloor, bending her left arm backwards in a very unnatural position. The other assistants were unable to pull him away. When the principal came in, (his name is Dave and he is the perfect role model for “big and tall”) Matthew atttacked and overpowered him also. He is fostering chaos at school and the report from this incident was alarming in that it gave evidence to something that I have been wondering about. The lady who was pinned down told me, “I looked into his eyes and…it wasn’t Matthew. It was something evil.” An incredible statement from a lady who operates from a predominantly secular platform. This is beyond routine autism and while we can oftentimes identify what sets him off and avoid conflicts, the perimeters are clearly changing. There is a need for deliverance and one can probably guess which passages were running through my mind:
Mark 9:21 “And he asked his father, How long is it ago since this came unto him? and he said Of a child.”
Matthew 17:21 “Howbeit this kind goeth not out but by prayer and fasting.”
Suddenly the words from Job 23:12 take on a whole new dimension. For a time now, the topic of deliverance has been in the forefront; not only for Matthew but also for ventures into the streets where one is confronted by captives of every device imaginable. This is going to be an unusual analogy, but it fits. I feel like I’ve been marching with the intantry and now must go far ahead of the traditional front. Journeying deep behind enemy lines and into places which most folks only have nightmares about. I think that Matthew has a role in all of this, but I cannot identify it as of now. This morning I began thinking of certain deliverance ministries when I was stopped short. I have the Holy Spirit abiding within; I should be taking this on directly. Please understand that I fully embrace the deliverance ministry. There is a desperate need for those who are called to this area of ministry, however, I was reminded that the one who grants deliverance abides in everyone who is born of the Spirit. I need to seek the Lord first and foremost.
Oftentimes we bring forth the standing petitions whthout knowing what the answer will look like or how the situation will unfold. But we know that when a person is given a heart to know God and whenever the name of Jesus is glorified, it’s a good thing. I don’t see the whole of this battle, but here’s an encouraging thought:
Mark 5:20 “And he departed, and began to publish in Decapolis how great things Jesus had done for him; and all men did marvel.”
Well I’ll close for now. I should probably not post this yet as I have not really proof-read through it, but I wanted to get it out because this situation is in much need of prayer. The battles are intensifying in every venue and we must be close to the Lord Jesus if we’re to be in a proper place; both spiritually and physically. The situation with Matthew is baffling, however, I know that the Lord has a clear picture of what’s going on and what has to transpire. And as such, the two standing prayers remain. “Lord Jesus, please grant us a heart to know you and let your name be glorified.”
Blessings always in Jesus name.