Wednesday, February 13, 2008

The Weak Praying for the Weak

This was my journal entry from 2/5/03:

From Psalm 35:13-14: “…when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth; I humbled my soul with fasting, and my prayer kept returning to my bosom. I went about as though it were my friend or brother; I bowed down mourning, as one who sorrows for a mother.”

Right now there are so many who are struggling in the church my husband and I attend with life-threatening or debilitating illnesses. Should David's prayer not be the way we pray for those who are thus weighed down? Yet how often I am too busy to bother and do not feel compelled in this manner. And my tendency is to fast only when the matter putting me on my knees is my own situation.

Can I pray the way David did by stirring something within me to do this good work? Of course not, nor does God want me to. But look again at what David says, “…and my prayer kept returning to my bosom…” This is the prompting of the Spirit of intercession. Only He can burden a heart like this. And when He does, we pray, for we must. The urging is too great not to.

God has given us seasons of prayer like this. But then all too often we faint and the burden loses its intensity. We become discouraged, cold-hearted and cease praying, or struggle to pray with little or no fervency. But there is still a throne of grace to bring our weaknesses to. “Therefore, let us draw near to the throne of grace so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (Heb. 4:26)

This is what we need! I cannot even pray rightly without this help. I am weak and sense no urgency or fervency to pray – to intercede for those who are in need of my requesting of the God of grace for them. But I can ask for God to burden my soul as He did David’s. I can draw near to the throne and find the grace to help me pray for those who are too weak to pray for themselves.

This is a work of the Spirit and will God withhold from me the very thing He has promised? (Luke 11:13) Never! But instead, by His Spirit, He will stir within me the very purposes He wishes to accomplish through my prayer. He will tell me what to pray for and that prayer will keep returning to my bosom. When the Spirit urges us in this manner, we can also rest assured that He will accomplish that which He burdens us to request of Him.

May we, though weak with mere feet of clay, by the throne of grace find help and strength through the power of the Spirit of intercession to pray fervently for the weak (sick and infirmed) among us. God will strengthen the supplicant and the sick one to the praise of His glory.

“If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?" (Luke 11:13)
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1 comment:

  1. thank you for that as a brother in the Lord- I appreciated the call to pray.
    Iirio Palompo, Vern Hendrickson and Paul Miranda kept returning to my bosom and I prayed.