Paul writes in Ephesians 5:16, “[Redeem] the time for the days are evil.” We live in exciting times. More people are alive today than any previous generation. The opportunity to impact our world for Christ has never been greater. We have all the resources we need. But there’s one disturbing question, “Where are the workers?”
Jesus said that the solution to enough workers for the harvest is found in prayer (Mt. 9:37-38). But that presents another problem. Where are the men and women of prayer?
Too many of us have become so busy that we have no time for God. It’s impossible to have an intimate relationship with anyone without sufficient time with that person. How much more true is that with God? We long to spend time with those we love. Therefore, if you truly love God, you will desire to spend time alone with Him sharing your heart and allowing Him to share His heart with you.
This may be the greatest hindrance of this generation of pastors. We have become “professional” ministers and learned well how to produce “quality” programs. But we’ve forgotten the secret chamber of prayer. We often entertain but seldom convict. We draw crowds to our buildings but few to our Savior. We’ve learned the art of developing partnerships, but lost the passion to know the one Partner that really matters.
The Father longs to spend time with His children. He calls to us. Steal away and make time to meet with Him. If there is any hindrance to your intimacy with God, identify it, confess it, and repent of it. Determine in your heart that you long to know Him, really know Him, more than anything in life. He will come to you. He will meet with you. Don’t allow any obstacle to keep you from such intimacy with God.
Lord Jesus, forgive my sin of busyness! I repent of giving in to the temptation to be caught up in every possible activity or opportunity that comes my way, even if they are kingdom-related. Instead, help my spirit to be yielded to Your heart and show me the things that keep me from deeper intimacy with You. Out of repentance please make my desire for You so strong that I can’t walk away from any opportunity to seek Your face. Let a life of prayer flow out of the hearts of Your people as they are empowered by the Holy Spirit so that You will be glorified by wave after wave of workers for the harvest.
–Adapted from Giving Ourselves to Prayer: An Acts 6:4 Primer for Ministry (Chapter 37, Hindrances to Effective Prayer by Sammy Tippit). This book is available at prayershop.org. Use the code CONPSP3 at checkout to receive an additional 10% discount.
Praise God for his teaching to be of good cheer even in a world of tribulation (Jn. 16:33). Thank God for being your shelter in times of trouble (Ps. 91:1-2). Confess personal burdens that you haven’t committed to him and which rob you of that “good cheer” (2 Cor. 5:4). Commit yourself to trusting Christ in every situation (1 Cor. 10:13). Ask God to reveal himself in a special way to his children who feel distant from him today.
Intercede for any of your family members or friends who are suffering intensely today. Ask God not to withhold his mercy. Pray that his love and truth will protect them (Ps. 40:11).
“Praying for people will bring you to love them. Loving them will lead you to serve them. Serving them will be the open door through which God can move in to save, heal, and make whole.” —Maxie Dunnam
Prayer Points taken from Patterns for Prayer by Alvin VanderGriend.