Intercession: Living in the World

Intercession: This weekend in obedience in prayer, I call you to intercession for a specific cause. It is not a political cause though it involves politics. It is not a religious cause though it involves religion. It is not a governmental cause though it involves government. It is not an education or media cause though it involves both of them. Analyzing community, national, international, and personal interactions, I stepped back and asked the Holy Spirit, “What is it I am missing? What is it I am seeing? How do they intersect?” This Morning Moment Online Church is the one place I choose to express in faith unhindered. I call you to pray for God’s Glory to interrupt every aspect of personal and public life. He commands it in the Lord’s Prayer.

SOLUM CTI, where I work fixing fractured families is a faith work; however, walks in the courts of the world, the simple world, and comports as a non-profit inspired of faith and driven by research methodologies. There are right requirements of comportment working with government and we respect those boundaries while expressing our faith.

SOLUM Insurance and Benefits, where I work in the world of business to bring finances for the non-profit, the National Center for Fathering, and the National Association for Grandparenting is a profit based initiative in the simple world and comports as such. We have a huge vision that requires firm financial footing and people have retreated from giving in the faith community. What a tragedy, but it must be addressed. Families need healing. Faith in Jesus Christ is the current in all we do and will not be denied, but we must walk in the world yet not of the world and redeem our time as servants of God visible in our faith to all while giving respect to the faith of others.

And here at the Morning Moment, we wrestle in the unseen battle that does not respect the boundaries. The enemy does not respect the boundaries of government, education, business, media, and community that we place on ourselves. He strikes viciously and continually to destroy whatever is good and lovely and honest and excellent and of a good report. He dances with abandon in the media, growls in the courts of government, strikes with litigation in business, accuses in the education system, and lies in community. He uses Christian and non-Christian to do his work of undermining and attack and respects no boundaries. He uses us and our minds and emotions against ourselves. He slithers into church, congregation, gathering, and prayer closet and strikes at our very heal in our most intimate moment. He distorts our thinking and causes questions of right intention to spin us off course. He and his minions are good at what they do.

Jesus is our example here. In the great contest with Satan in the desert, Jesus was in an intimate place of prayer and fasting. That is where the enemy struck deepest. Jesus looks into the eyes of one created to be a blessing to mankind, who has turned from his Creator to be the thorn of mankind. He is a betrayer. He is disloyal. He is vicious. But, at one time he was a friend. At one time they walked together in the created order as comrades. And now the enemy strikes to undermine and destroy.

This is a good description of the battlefield of our mind and hearts. Our own thoughts betray us. Our own emotions, meant to build become a barrier to growth. The enemy plays not so much through the actions of others, but inside our thoughts and intents. It should not matter what others do, for that is not the battleground. It is what we make of it that matters. It is not the politicians, educators, courts, government leaders, media entertainers, or business competitors that attack us. It is our response in the deep items of the soul that can bring us down or lift us up. The battle is fought in the court of prayer. And prayer is both private and public.

Do not let the enemy convince you that while he and his run ruthlessly with abandon in government, business, media, religion, education, and community that you should be silent in your faith. Should he convince you of such, you and our families and our communities and our nation are doomed. You can no more separate your faith from your activities than you can walk down the street and leave your head in your bedroom. You must fight in the market with prayer. You must fight in the government with prayer. You must fight in the schools with prayer. You must fight at the sports event with prayer. You must fight with prayer and actions led of prayer. You must walk in all the courts of world as a victorious warrior of faith understanding “Listen carefully, I am sending you out like sheep among wolves, so be wise as serpents, and innocent as doves.” Matthew 10:16.

And as we walk this way, we will be attacked, vilified, accused and castigated in the open because we walk in the open.

As a business manager, I was assigned to a hospital to overhaul a failed computer operation. It was a mess. For me, prayer was essential. The Bible has always been my source of wisdom for unraveling tough business messes. There is great wisdom there . Like every other assignment in my career, my personal bible sat on a shelf in my office ready at hand. One day as I was working with a supervisor, I reached with no thought at all to the Bible, opened it to a verse and said, “See, here is the principle we are using.” I closed it, set it back on the shelf and went on with the conversation. Later, it struck me that his eyes had bugged out at that moment. I do not apologize for that moment. To dig into an eternal source of wisdom for guidance in a hard moment is common sense and spiritual power. I was paid for who I am and what I know to get a hard, unsolved job completed. And that we did, using all the resources at my disposal including prayer and Biblical wisdom.

When I took that job, that same supervisor would cruise my neighborhood during my home Bible study and would tape record employee sessions to attempt to catch me crossing some invisible barrier. The enemy had no qualms about attacking me on a personal and spiritual basis in a religiously supported hospital. At one point, a senior executive chastised me for talking to the chaplain about helping other employees that were coming to me. “There is no place for prayer in the work place.”, he said while we worked at Baptist Medical Center and the front desk was staffed by volunteers from Baptist churches and we had six chaplains on staff. He himself was an ordained Baptist minister, who bought the enemy’s lie. What fool I was to believe that the corporate chaplains might help the staff not just the patients. The enemy has no problem using religion against you in government, education, media, business, and community. And you must have no problem with fighting with intense faith in this battle.

Through prayerful application of solid business and organizational principles, we saved the company millions of dollars, stabilized the computer operation to 99.9% reliability from a position of maybe 60% reliability, and established an environment of respect that was lacking. No awards or promotions were given for a job well done. No prayer meetings were held at work. No witnessing was done other than the witness of a normal life lived in Christ. God reigned. “(For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal, but mighty through God to the pulling down of strong holds;)” 2 Corinthians‬ ‭10:4‬ ‭KJV‬‬‬‬

Two great events followed on the heals of this work. Some years later, the manager I left in place, who was not the supervisor using devious tactic, took me to lunch. I was working for a mega church at the time. He told me they were still using the PAL method to manage the shop. They had taken principles of management that I had taught them and created a method of making decisions in operations using my initials. What an honor that God would be honored in such a way even though the enemy hated it. Again, an employee from the engineering department consulted in one of our other pastors at his gym. This was 10 years after I left the company. “Phil never witnessed to anyone at work, but every person who worked alongside him has now come to Christ. I don’t understand it.” What a testimony to God’s intervening grace when we allow Him to live visibly through us in our battle in business, government, community, education, media and more.

I adjure you, direct you, encourage you, and plead with you to fight with all your faith in Jesus Christ in private and public prayer that family, community, state, and nation conform to the will of Christ. His kingdom come, His will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Do not hesitate. There is no place or position or person or activity exempt from His rulership or influence. Do not buy that lie. In your gentleness, you will be viciously attacked. You will witness thrashings in the world that are direct result of community prayer in which you participate as one. Continue in prayer and good works and stand your ground. The Lord is your strong tower.

“According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord:” Ephesians‬ ‭3:11‬ ‭KJV‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

“That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.

With good will doing service, as to the Lord, and not to men:

Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might. Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places. Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness; And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace; Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God: Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;”. Ephesians‬ ‭6:3, 7, 10-18‬ ‭KJV‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

We are family.

You are loved.

He is our Strong Tower

Pastor Phil

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