Our guest contributor this month is Pastor John Ollis.
John is a Pastor/Teacher/Mentor with 50+ years in the ministry, ministering in both Australia and 25 other nations.
I had the privilege of meeting John on my first visit to Australia in 1980 when I preached in his assembly in Newcastle. We have remained friends ever since.
John’s exhortation asks us to consider the place of intercessory prayer. I believe this is a timely reminder with regard a subject that is often forgotten and/or misunderstood. I do not consider myself an “intercessor”, however I have known times of deep intercession, either for short moments of times or over longer periods.
I concede that there are some people who are inclined to spend more time in intercessory prayer than others. Nevertheless, this is an area of prayer that we can all experience from time to time. This is a most important aspect of prayer, especially to bring about breakthroughs in desperate circumstances.
I commend to you Pastor John’s exhortation.
OUR GREATEST NEED AS A CHURCH
Pastor John Ollis
I sincerely wonder if there has been such a period in history where so many things are happening in the world and seem to be important signs that we are coming close to the end of the age. Sadly, the Church seems almost blind, and not concerned about these things like….
- The Syrian civil war,
- The constant threats on Israel
- Hurricanes, Tornados, Floods, Earthquakes
- Same sex marriage matters
- The shrinking of the Church, especially in the West.
- AND THE LIST GOES ON AND ON
Do we have an answer as a church to confront these issues? YES, YES, YES.
Because of the lack of Biblical Discipleship we have a generation of believers who know little or nothing about prayer. When a person comes to faith, after seeing they have the assurance of sins forgiven, they need to be taught how to pray. Even the Disciples of Jesus asked Him, “Lord teach us how to pray”.
Prayer MUST have structure, including
- Confession and Repentance
- Surrender (reaffirming constantly Christ’s Lordship over our life (Romans 12:1)
- Petition (our personal needs)
I want to highlight INTERCESSION
James tells us
“The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man (or woman) avails MUCH”.
We need a fresh revelation (perhaps for many a new revelation) that PRAYER CHANGES THINGS.
Believers should pray Intercessory prayers, but also seriously consider making themselves available to the Lord to be used in the MINISTRY OF INTERCESSION.
We must tell the Lord that we are available, that we have sat down and counted the cost, and we will give ourselves to Intercessory Prayer.
WHAT WILL START TO HAPPEN?
Often, when you least expect it, a heavy burden will come upon you that you then must pray through. Frequently you will know what the burden is about, at other times you may not and you must simply let the Holy Spirit intercede through you. Many times this is by using the prayer language God has given you, and you continue to pray, until the burden lifts and you know in your heart something significant has been accomplished in the heavenlies.
We have those things I listed above and many more matters that are going on in our world that we must spend time interceding about. We need to lay hold of the promises of God and clearly know what the Word of God says about the matter, so as we pray in the Spirit, know we are PRAYING IN THE WILL OF GOD.
WHAT ABOUT THE NATIONS OF THE WORLD?
We have the glorious promise in Psalm 2:8
Ask of me and I will give you the nations your inheritance.
If ever there was a time we needed to pray for the nations it is NOW. I am sure there is a nation or nations that God has laid upon your heart. Generally there are strong spiritual forces (principalities and powers – Ephesians 6:12) that are strongly controlling these nations. Often it is forces behind non Christian religions and these need to be confronted and cast down through intercessory prayer. As a result of powerful prayer for example; South Korea was once a predominantly Buddhist nation, now over 50% of the nation is Christian. Dr Yonggi Cho says the Church in South Korea moves under an “open heaven”, because of the power of prayer over many years.
I want to encourage and challenge you to come to that place like John Knox, where he prayed, “GIVE ME SCOTLAND OR I DIE”. It may be your own homeland or a nation that God lays on your heart and you will fast and pray until you see revival come.
We read in Ezekiel 22:30
So I sought for a man among them who would make a wall, and stand in the gap before me, on behalf of the land, that I should not destroy it; but I found no one.
What a sad verse.
WILL YOU STAND IN THE GAP?
- Intercede for answers and change for what is happening in our world
- For the Church, that true revival would come to it
- That there will be a mighty end time harvest as a result of the Church being revived.
LET US SEE JESUS GLORIFIED IN OUR GENERATION – AMEN