Praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints. – Ephesians 6:18
Prayer is warfare! Prayer is not a nice, sweet Sunday school picnic. An invisible war rages across the galaxies! Angels and demons do battle for the souls of people. Lives are at stake. Families are at stake. Marriages are at stake.
The context of this charge to pray is found in verse 12: “For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.” Then God tells us to don our armor for the battle. Finally, there’s the call to prayer. Warfare prayer.
In “The Invisible War,” Chip Ingram relates one graphic example of prayer and the battle:
There was a missionary in Africa also serving as a medic. To get the medical supplies he needed, he had to travel by bike to a neighboring city. The trip took two days so he had to sleep alone in the jungle overnight. On one particular occasion he came to the city to get the supplies and he helped a man that was badly injured in a fight. He also shared the gospel with the man. The next time the missionary went to the city to get medicine, he saw the same man he helped previously. This man proceeded to tell the missionary of his plan to kill him and steal the supplies the last time he was there.
However, when the man and some others followed him into the jungle they saw 26 armed soldiers surrounding the missionary. Being outnumbered, they left the missionary alone. The missionary was puzzled by this as he was alone that night in the jungle. Several months later the missionary shared this story with his home church, and a man in the congregation stood and told the missionary that he remembered that night well as he had received a strong urge to pray for the missionary that night. This same man gathered others to pray with him. As the men stood one by one they counted 26.
Never underestimate the power of prayer. Prayer is the real work. “More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of” (Alfred Tennyson).
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Judy Estey | firstname.lastname@example.org