October 11, 2023

1 Samuel 7:5,8-9 (NKJV)

“And Samuel said, ‘Gather all Israel to Mizpah, and I will pray to the Lord for you.’…So the children of Israel said to Samuel, ‘Do not cease to cry out to the LORD our God for us, that He may save us from the hand of the Philistines.’…Then Samuel cried out to the LORD for Israel, and the LORD answered him.”

The greatest blessing you can have, is to have someone praying for you. Too many people “think” people are praying for them, when in reality, nobody is. Money and other tangible resources are good, but they are all limited. The greatest and most impactful resource you need, are intercessors – people who make time to deliberately pray for you, preferably by name and location.

Now, we don’t look down on generic prayers, like, “Oh God, bless all the Christians in the world,” or “Lord, bless all missionaries on the mission field.” There is value in that, but that is not what we are talking about. Generic prayers have their place but also have their limitations. The power of specific prayers is that they are targeted and can hit very accurately. When the Philistines muster their army against you, this is a specific battle. What you need is a specific response. What you need is specific help. What you need is a specific intercessor. Blessed are those who have people who specifically pray for them.

In this story, the people of Israel pleaded with Samuel, saying, “Do not cease to cry out to the LORD our God for us, that He may save us from the hand of the Philistines.” See how specific the request was. They confessed that the Lord was their God as a people, and they knew that they could pray to the Lord, but they asked Samuel to pray for them as well. “Then Samuel cried to the LORD…and the LORD answered him.”

This devotion is not a call for us to look for special “prayer mercenaries” to pray for us. That is not our position, and neither is that a Biblical or New Testament pattern. However, this is a call to pray for one another; to take the ministry of intercession seriously. We are a “holy nation and a royal priesthood.” In Christ, you are the priest that God is looking to, to pray for your spouse, your children, your friends, your family, your church, your neighborhood, and your world. Don’t wait for a supersonic prayer warrior from out of space. People around you need a Samuel. You be that Samuel to them.

If this devotion has succeeded, it should provoke you to arise in your spirit and begin taking ownership of the situation around you. Philistines are plundering and devastating and attacking. Many people feel paralyzed and afraid, and unsure of what to do. Don’t wait for them to ask you to pray. Step into the gap and begin praying. Samuel offered to pray for Israel before Israel made the request for him to pray. That’s the way it’s supposed to be. Don’t wait to be asked to pray. Pray because that is God’s calling on you as a priest. Pray for your loved ones. In fact, even pray for your enemies. That is the New Testament.

Now the ball is in your court. Will you arise and be a Samuel to the folks around you? And do you have a Samuel that you are sure is praying for you?

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