We continue to look at the topic of divine delay or divine denial: What next? After all, many of us have prayed hard in the face of Covid-19, riots, social unrest, including in the US election, etc. What is God doing in all this? A valid question.
Last month, we offered the following assessment: God hears and is pleased with our prayers, but He wants us to develop a persistent and prevailing attitude in prayer.
On these points I want to quote from best-selling author and master intercessor, Dutch Sheet, in his Give Him 15 post for 1 March 2021:
As intercessors, we must be strong in perseverance. Whether interceding for a person or a nation, it often requires a prolonged season of time to see results. This is not because it takes a while to convince or motivate God, but our prayers are releasing His power into situations to change people’s thinking, stop demonic activity, release life, and more. These things require a persistent release of power until they are fully accomplished.
Prayer is usually more like a siege than one quick battle. In fact, that is one of the meanings of the Old Testament words for a watchman. The concept of a siege implies time and process. Though most breakthroughs seem sudden, they are really a culmination of much that has happened to prepare the way. Galatians 6:9 tells us, “Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.” “Time” in this verse is the Greek word kairos, which means “strategic or opportune” time, contrasted to the Greek word chronos which means “general, chronological time.”
(By the way, I highly recommend you subscribe to Dutch’s great service. The URL is https://www.givehim15.com I have been using this service for several months – and love it).
Other points we learned last month: keep standing no matter what, trust God no matter what, be an overcomer and pursue revival – six points in all. Here are some more:
- VERY IMPORTANT: Of course you should pray and keep praying. Remember, however, to ‘praise’ and ‘thank God’ when you do. These two things are part of the language of faith and the sound of revival. Praise and thanksgiving were Jehoshaphat’s secret weapon when defeating a coalition of three nations: Ammon, Moab, and Mount Seir (2 Chronicles 20 – see verses 20-22). Continual thanksgiving is God’s will for you (1 Thessalonians 5:18). Praise God for Who He is, what He has done, and what He is going to do. Your prayer life will go much further and much higher when you thank and praise God. It is a refreshing thing to do.
- MEANING OF DELAY: It is highly possible that divine delay is so God can do a deeper, higher, and more thorough work among the nations. It also is meant to change our focus from people to Him, and do some adjustments in our own heart. When God overtly works, it will be a greater and more wonderful action than we could ever imagine. The breakthrough, which looks sudden, has actually been in the works for a long time (again, chronos kairos time). God’s best is worth the wait!
- STAY IN HOPE: Hope is faith in the future and for the future. Jesus commands our destiny. Hope is an anchor of the soul, sure and steadfast (Hebrews 6:19). Hope thrives in the unseen. Romans 8:24-25:
For we are saved by hope: but hope that is seen is not hope: for what a man seeth, why doth he yet hope for? But if we hope for that we see not, then do we with patience wait for it.
Maturity and patience are forged on the anvil of hope and will bring stability in the midst of the storm.
- FELLOWSHIP: In times of transition and waiting, it is important to team up with like-minded people of faith. If possible, pray with them. Hebrews 3:13 encourages us to exhort one another daily, while it is called Today.
- DISCERNMENT: We live in times of increasing deception, delusion, disinformation, doublespeak, gaslighting, smoke and mirrors. What you see is not what you get. We can and should resist and reject these things which can blind us to the truth. To be deceived is dangerous and it is also unnecessary. Through Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit and the Word of God, you have access to the source of all truth that can never be refuted. God’s truth is firmer than any solid rock. As you embrace these three sources of divine truth, remember that God will guide you and warn you if deception lurks around the corner. Delusion can destroy but discernment saves.
- INFORMATION: In light of point 5, be careful what you read or your sources of news and information. Even if it is factually correct, the spirit behind such information can be bad. Most of all, watch your mouth and heart, because out of it are the issues of life (Proverbs 4:23).
Remember, the future is not dark, for … the path of the just is as the shining light, that shineth more and more unto the perfect day — Proverbs 4:18