Ephesians: Becoming What We Believe
Intercessory Prayer & Prayer Cards
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What is Intercession?
Intercession is a specific kind of prayer focused on the things we want to see God do in our lives and the lives of others. When we intercede, we join with Jesus in advocating that God’s will be done “on earth as it is in heaven.” We pray for Him to move in the lives and circumstances of those we love and those in our community. Sometimes this means that we keep praying or even wrestle with God in prayer until we see the outcome that we desire. This is called contending. It doesn’t mean that we always get what we want. But if we believe prayer really moves the hand of God, then we can act on that belief by expressing our healthy desires and trusting that God will hear and respond in kind.
In this practice, you will bring people and circumstances before God and then wait. Yes, wait. We wait on the Holy Spirit to help us see how to pray about these things. We want to know how God wants us to pray because His will is good; it is heaven coming to earth – life over death, healing over sickness, freedom over bondage, and so on. So we identify what we want to contend for, and then we make space. We ask the Spirit to quiet our perspective and desires, since they are only a part of God’s whole picture, and we allow Him to show us more of that bigger picture. It’s in this space that we boldly pray, “Your will be done” (Matt. 6v10).
This practice isn’t easy, but it’s worth it. Interceding requires faith, persistence, and boldness. It asks us to pray with confidence in God’s goodness and power, even if we never see the fruit of our prayers. We have to believe in his ability to heal and restore what’s broken; not only to patch things up, but to completely redeem them. When we believe and intercede, we get to be part of the miracles that happen, freedom given, and lives rescued and changed forever!
Practicing Intercessory Prayer
- Put away any distractions and take out a note card or cards. On those cards, list some people (including yourself) or circumstances where you desire to see God radically move. These will be your prayer cards.
- Consider these circumstances as you make your list: Any illness, financial needs, etc? Any relationships in need of healing – estranged family, friendships, marriages, etc? Any struggles in need of freedom – addiction, bondage, habitual sin, etc?
- Get into a comfortable (but alert) position and ask the Holy Spirit to come and teach you to pray. Just spend a minute or two in silence.
- As you sit, let your mind calm down. Try to gently slow your breathing, taking a few deep breaths, and do your best to release any tension. Let go of any expectations and just spend a few moments “being” with God.
- After a few minutes of silence, read through these truths. As you do, thank God that they are our reality:
- God is your Father; He has good intentions toward you and cares about your life – things small and big
- God is in heaven; and we can access heaven here, now, as close as the air up against your skin
- God hears your prayers and they really do make a difference
- Now pray through your prayer card(s)* Take note of any new thoughts or feelings that emerge as you pray.
- Then pray through “The Room”* Use this exercise to reflect on God’s heart for this person or circumstance.
- Close your eyes and picture yourself in a room with the Father or Jesus.
- Invite the Holy Spirit to bring something specific that he wants you to pray about “into the room.”
- Ask the Father/Jesus what He wants you to know about this person/circumstance. Then ask him how he wants you to pray and what he wants you to ask for
- Ask him to increase your faith, and then pray with boldness according to what the Spirit has shown
- Close in a prayer of gratitude and expectation.