I have known Jesus most of my life, but around age 20 the Holy Spirit did a major work in my life and gripped my heart in a significant way. I was water baptized at that time and baptized in the Spirit as well, but did not start speaking in tongues until about a year after that. The Lord directed me at that time to move from where I lived near Philadelphia to State College Pennsylvania to get involved in a church there and their campus ministry. I had already started going to college at Penn State University Park (the college in that town) prior to that and had taken a leave of absence, and was excited at the direction God was taking me. During that period what I needed most, which I didn’t know at the time, was mentoring in prophetic intercession.
After I moved to State College and began to volunteer with the ministry, I went out on Friday nights with a group of guys from the church to do street witnessing. We saw some cool miracles, one of which you can read here, but the Lord began to speak to me about moving into a time of prayer. I began to spend time at home in prayer, but it was a bit of a struggle for me because I wasn’t used to it. I joined a few others at the church who were starting up a Watch of The Lord intercession group based off of Mahesh and Bonnie Chavda’s program.
The Watch of the Lord became one of the most significant means of spiritual growth for me in that season of my life, and it was there that I learned and received mentoring in prophetic intercession. Prophetic intercession is a big term but it’s a pretty simple concept–you listen for what the Lord is saying, then pray that back to Him. While that might sound silly, it’s actually quite powerful. When we hear God and declare it, we cause His will to be done on earth as it is in heaven. Prophetic intercession is praying in partnership with God, and it gets results.
I remember back when the Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill happened, we spent time praying for the wildlife, the crews cleaning it up, and the whole situation. God gave us some clear instructions through nudges and intuitive leading, as well as through specific visions, of a particular species of bird that needed help, and we prayed accordingly. While I don’t remember what bird it was, one of my friends looked it up later and we were spot on. I remember God leading us in prayer over the 2004 Presidential Elections, and the morning of the election, at around 4:30 AM we got breakthrough. We knew in the spirit that our prayers worked and the President had been decided through prayer before the voting booths had even opened!
Sometimes we would hear visions, at other times we simply had strong emotions about a subject that we felt pulled to pray about. Still others we would hear verbal direction from God, and oftentimes that instruction was in agreement with what the Lord was speaking to other members present. One thing I learned is that one doesn’t have to be an intercessor to be able to intercede, and I discovered through experience just how important prayer is as a foundation to any endeavor.
I strongly believe in the work of intercession, and wish that mentoring in prophetic intercession was more common. Usually we would have four or five of us faithfully at each prayer meeting, and on occasion others would join us, but the core group grew in our faith in leaps and bounds during that two year period. There is no substitute for spending time with God, learning to hear Him, and engaging the spirit realm in prayer. While I cannot do that regularly in this season, I eagerly look forward to a time in the future when I can put my intercessor hat on again and get back on my knees.
If you are interested in learning more, or want mentoring in prophetic intercession yourself, I encourage you to check out the following resources, all of which were instrumental in helping me learn and grow in this area:
Watch Of The Lord: The Secret Weapon of the Last-Day Church by Mahesh and Bonnie Chavda
Intercessory Prayer by Dutch Sheets
Rees Howells: Intercessor by Norman Grubb