By Sherrie Aulds
Written as reflection on Dick Eastman’s book, “The Hour that Changes the World”
I hope that you have been able to journey with us in prayer – even if you have only caught a few pages of the book, “The Hour that Changes the World,” or only the weekly readings from our team. Please be encouraged. God is ready to use our meager efforts to grow us in His amazing work through prayer. Through prayer, God is inviting us to join Him in His mission of redemption for all people. Through these days leading up to Easter, we pray He stirs our hearts anew and afresh as we watch and intercede with Him.
“Lord, teach me to watch!”
We are familiar when Jesus asked his disciples to watch with Him in the Garden as He poured out His soul to the Father the night before He would give His life (Matthew 26:36-46). We remember how He returned to them three times, each time finding them asleep. In his book, Eastman reminds us how God “set watchmen on the walls” to guard the city of Jerusalem and warn the cities’ inhabitants of approaching enemies (p. 63).
What a challenging call to us to watch today! May we be people who understand our day. May we be reminded of how the enemy is at work. May our vigilance be heightened. In this strategic time of God’s redemptive plan, may we not be found sleeping. “Oh, Lord, teach me to watch!”
“Lord, teach me to intercede!”
This picture of a high priest blew me away the first time I saw it and read more. On his breastplate are twelve stones. The twelve stones are each engraved with one of the names of the twelve tribes of Israel (Exodus 28:21).
What an incredible picture. As the High Priest entered into the Most Holy Place to stand between God and His people, he bore their names.
This week’s reading on intercession is a beautiful reminder of the amazing role God has also given to us. Dick Eastman reminds us, that to intercede, is to “stand between a lost being and an almighty God.” Because of what Christ has done for us, we also now can come before God bearing the names of people in prayer.
Who are the ones we are bringing to Him in prayer? I was challenged in reading the stories of prayer that Eastman provided. I realize my “prayer world” can get pretty small – limited only to “my” sphere of influence, “my” family, “my” church, “my” neighborhood, “my” needs. And yet, we are invited to join Him in prayer for all nations and all peoples – even ones we have never met. “Oh, Lord, teach me to intercede!”