The Importance of Thanksgiving in Intercession

Thank You for Praying! 
As the year draws to a close, we thank God for answering our prayers for Missions.

Thanksgiving is a key component of Prayer and Intercession in the Bible.  

The Greek word ‘Eucharistia’ denotes, “a prayer with an attitude of thanksgiving, praying with thanksgiving”.

We can be truly grateful for what God has done through prayer and intercession in Global affairs in the past year.

Here are 5 Reasons for Thanksgiving:  

1.The Fact that ‘God is’.

The foundation of Intercession is knowing God’s character and nature which gives us confidence to pray continuously and persistently.

God has rewarded us in prayer because “He is”; He is eternal, and remains unchangeable.

“They will perish, but You will endure;

Yes, they will all grow old like a garment;

Like a cloak You will change them, And they will be changed.

But You are the same, And Your years will have no end”.  

 

http://www.lifeposters.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/842751002731.jpgOver a century ago the German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche said, “God is dead.”  Praise God, our God not only lives, He reigns! We must be grateful that He lives to hear and answer our prayer. He does not get tired of our prayer or become weary so that He cannot intervene in our world.

“Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the Lord, The Creator of the ends of the earth, neither faints nor is weary”.

We must be glad that God is not temperamental or moody and subject to change like humans are.  He is dependable and can be trusted with our lives and we can call on Him any time, 24/7, 365 days a year.

“Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good and His mercy endures forever.”

 

2.For the Partnership in Prayer.

God still uses prayer as the means of fulfilling Heaven’s purposes on earth. http://1.bp.blogspot.com/_9C8Xev0gJW0/TT8cqmAYqdI/AAAAAAAAAaM/UDK3CMnuGsA/s1600/Prayer.jpgGod has not changed His mind about using human instruments and has not abandoned prayer to use some other unknown mystical methods.  

While God may move in mysterious ways to answer prayer, prayer is not a mystery. It is a partnership and even many centuries later, God still says, “I sought for a man”.

The severity of the crisis or the seriousness of situations has not caused Him to find an alternative to prayer!

While human organizations constantly seek to upgrade and innovate methods to face uncertain challenges of time, God has not changed or replaced Prayer. He still anticipates prayer from us even though we have failed many times.   

 

Prayer is never exhausted nor wasted; for "Your prayers and your alms have come up for a memorial before God.” Jesus said, that “Men always ought to pray and not lose heart,” because heaven is dependent on prayer on earth for His ‘Kingdom to come and will be done.’ He is not looking for workers, for He has millions of angels to do that; He is looking for partners who work “together with God” in prayer.

 

Take some time to thank Him for this great partnership with Him in prayer.

 

3.For the Privilege and Opportunity of Prayer.

Heaven eagerly awaits prayer; for “the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, ascended before God from the angel's hand.”

Everything that goes up comes back down to earth or gets lost in space. The ‘Voyager 1’ is NASA's longest-operating spacecraft in space since it left earth almost 37 years ago as. At present it is about 12 billion miles from the sun and traveling out of the solar system to Earth’s closest star; a journey which will take almost 40,000 years!  

http://www.slate.com/content/dam/slate/articles/technology/future_tense/2013/07/130711_FUT_PioneerTenProbe.jpg.CROP.original-original.jpg They continue to listen to Voyager nearly every day, and in case the spacecraft encounter any life beyond our solar system, it carries a golden record with a collection of sights and sounds from Earth, including 117 images and greetings in 54 languages!

Imagine how far your prayers can reach! Your prayers are not lost in space looking for an unreachable target, but ascend to Heaven’s Throne and each prayer is noted and heard by God.

         “The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their cry.”

Prayer is a privilege reserved for Intercessors, who, like Esther can stand before the King to be asked: "What do you wish? What is your request? It shall be given to you--up to half the kingdom!"

However, the Father promises His children more than ‘half the kingdom’; “Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father's good pleasure to give you the kingdom!”

Thank God for this amazing privilege!

 

4. For Answered Prayer and change in History.

History would have been otherwise, if not for prayer. We can surely thank God for many answered prayers in 2014 as we prayed for nations, churches, people groups, individuals, ministries, missionaries and many other needs. Let us take some time thank Him for such answers to prayer.

Thank Him for giving what we did not even ask for! He told Solomon, “I have also given you what you have not asked: both riches and honor, so that there shall not be anyone like you among the kings all your days.” And then, there are “things that has been added unto you” while you gave priority to seeking His ‘Kingdom first’ in Intercession. Intercession is more than meeting needs; it is a life-style of God’s favor and provision being added to your life. 

Then there were surprises when God moved beyond your expectations in 2014, as He “who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think”.

When Daniel prayed, an angel was released who said, “at the beginning of your supplications the command went out, and I have come to tell you...”

http://www.worldtimezones.com/includes/img/worldmap.png?1196938271Such angelic intervention changed the Kingdoms of Babylon, Persia and Greece. God has also moved today in modern Babylon and Persia, and in other nations in the Middle East because of our focused our prayer in 2014.  I received this note recently of such intervention for which we can give thanks.

“The nightly news may present a bleak outlook for the Middle East. Yet behind the horror of war, God is touching hearts in powerful ways. There is something happening right now that is unprecedented, the spiritual openness is incredible! We are seeing people in refugee camps who have questions, who want to know more about Jesus. I have friends who have been here 17-20 years and its mind boggling for them. Previously they shared with someone for seven or eight years before they came to know Jesus. Now it happens in two or three months and they bring others with them." 

“There is something happening in the spiritual atmosphere because these refugees are so open and so hungry. Those in neighboring countries are responding in the same way. Something is being stirred up. I see communities are changing, I can see the Kingdom expanding."

Praise the Lord!

5.   For a Global move of the Holy Spirit.
Finally let’s thank God that the Holy Spirit is active and alive in the Church of Jesus Christ in every part of the globe. In 2014 we drew even closer to the fulfilment of the promise Jesus gave: “This gospel of the kingdom will be preached in all the world as a witness to all the nations, and then the end will come”.

The following highlights of the Pew Research Report of the state of Christianity on the earth affirms this as never before.

  • Though Christianity began in the Middle East-North Africa, today that region has both the lowest concentration of Christians (about 4% of the region’s population) and the smallest number of Christians (about 13 million) of any major geographic region.
  • Indonesia, a Muslim-majority country, is home to more Christians than all 20 countries in the Middle East-North Africa region combined.
  • Nigeria now has more than twice as many Protestants (broadly defined to include Anglicans and independent churches) as Germany, the birthplace of the Protestant Reformation.
  • Brazil has more than twice as many Catholics as Italy.
  • Although Christians comprise just under a third of the world’s people, they form a majority of the population in 158 countries and territories, about two-thirds of all the countries and territories in the world.
  • About 90% of Christians live in countries where Christians are in the majority; only about 10% of Christians worldwide live as minorities.

(Pew Research Report: http://www.pewforum.org/2011/12/19/global-christianity-exec/ )

We thank you for your partnership in mobilizing Intercession in 2014 and we look forward to a great year in 2015 for Missions Intercession.

Have a Wonderful Christmas as you celebrate the birth of the Savior!    

(Scripture references:   Isa 40:28, Ezekiel 22:30, Acts 10:4,  Rev 8:4, Luke 18:1, Matt 6:10, Psalm 34:15, Heb 4:16, Esther 5:3,  Luke  1 Kings 3:13, Mat 6:33  , Eph 3:20, Matt 24:15)