Why Not, Try Tears, and Intercession
As I sit and write this, I am sitting on a Southwest flight between Baltimore and Denver. The men in the row behind me are arguing politics with fervor so strong that they could be the next Karl Marx. Earlier in the airport, I was listening to a woman, sporting a cast on her leg, in her mid-50’s talking to her travel companions about the office party and how she drunkenly fell, broke her leg, and they needed to call 911. On my way to airport, I get a text from a friend whose husband just left her to go back to his ex-wife. How important is the role of prayer in the life of a spiritual leader? It is, hands down, the single most important aspect of a leader’s life next to his personal relationship with Christ.
Without a strong prayer life…that direct hotline to our Creator…we lose touch with that which is THE most important factor of change. Could my friend’s husband be convinced to stay and work on the marriage? You bet! But only if it is through direct conversation, unceasing and directly open, to Christ. Could the woman in the airport have a more fulfilling life beyond getting drunk and living a life of emptiness? Of course!! But only by calling out to Christ to heal her!! Could our government change direction and be prosperous and a blessing to all who call themselves American? It most certainly can!!! But it will only happen if we ask God above to intercede and fix this country!!! (2 Chronicles 7:14)
I found a lot of places in which my prayer life could be stronger. First and foremost, I took what Dave Earley calls his “Why Not?” questions very seriously. I find that my prayer life has been inconsistent, especially lately as my professional and/or personal life gets more and more busy. Why not just make it happen consistently? Why not find those times where I am focused on me and turn that focus on He? Why not just set up more regular prayer times, not just once a day, but throughout the day in which I simply just stop and love on God.
Next, General William Booth, founder of the Salvation Army has a story that resonated with me. A couple of his people had set out to find a new work in Christ. They kept hitting walls, meeting failure face to face. General Booth sent back a note that simply had two words on it, “Try Tears.” They followed his advice and were met with such a huge revival and movement from God. The single most prayerful time in my life was when I was going through my divorce, and especially right after learning of my ex’s affair. God came to life inside me!!! I was broken and crushed, and, during those times of downright despair and non-stop tears, God became real. As I emerged from my divorce, I started to realize the walls I had put around my heart and am now working to get back to that time of tearfulness so that I can experience God even more. (Psalm 34:17, Psalm 57:2, and many, many others)
Third, the story of D.L. Moody’s unknown prayer partner struck a chord with me. I have started asking people more and more to pray for me. I set up a text alias on my phone made up of people I know have a strong heart for God and will pray for me. When I have something going on in my life, I send a text. Prayers of intercession, thankfulness, and even simply adoration of our Creator have been sent via text. In return, I have seen God’s moving so strong that it has been dizzying!!! (1 Timothy 2:1, Matthew 18:19-20, and many more)