Reverend Tina Burgess.........................07909107404
Email: [email protected]
I wonder if you enjoy reading Christian books? Not necessarily academic ones but ones which have been written to build up and nurture the faith of the believer. During the season of Lent, we had been encouraged to draw near to God in prayer and reading and the reading of scripture. One way I have been trying to do that is by reading a book on prayer at bedtime….a book called the ‘A – Z of Prayer – Building Strong Foundations for Daily Conversations with God’, by Matthew Porter, which I would recommend as a really good way of doing just that.
One of the sections which I found really helpful was the section, ‘I is for Intercession’. It reminded me that supplication is when we pray for ourselves; when we are honest and open to God about our need of Him and of his generous and loving provision in our everyday lives and situations. Intercession, on the other hand, is when we pray in this way for others.
One of the ways of looking at intercessory prayer, Matthew Porter suggests, is to see it as ‘standing in the gap’, and says, “On one side of the gap is heaven, the dwelling place of God where he and all the infinite resources of his kingdom reside. On the other side is earth, which to some extent lacks God’s presence and the resources of heaven. When we intercede, we stand in the gap and pray for God’s kingdom to come on earth, as in heaven”.
He carries on to remind us that when Jesus died on the cross for the forgiveness of our sin, with outstretched arms, he stood in the gap, bridging heaven and earth, so that those who believe in him can pray, ‘your kingdom come, your will be done, here on earth as in heaven’. Matthew Porter also rightly points us to the fact that the risen Jesus continues to intercede for us.
In the Bible, Romans 8:34 tells us, “Christ Jesus who died – more than that – who was raised to life, is at the right hand of God and is also interceding for us.”
As Christ continues to intercede for us, we are directed to intercede for others…to be partners with Jesus in praying for God’s kingdom to come in every nation, city and town, and in every person’s life where it currently is not. (1 Timothy 2: 1-4)
In recent years, the Archbishops of Canterbury and of York have initiated a concentrated focus on interceding for those around us who do not yet know the love and saving grace of God almighty. They call all believers, everywhere, to join in praying every day, between Ascension and Pentecost, for five people to come to know the love of God in Christ Jesus. They have called this prayer initiative, ‘Thy Kingdom Come’.
Will you partner with the heart of God and with believers everywhere for those few days, to seek to bring those you love and care about into the knowledge of God’s love for them?
Keep looking on St Peter’s Facebook page for details of any ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ events which you can join in with through church…or alternately, go to www.ThyKingdomCome.global for resources and ideas of how you can join in from home….or do both!