Faith Messages to build your faith

Thursday, May 15, 2014

#84 Filtering Out the Flakes

C. Peter Wagner  tells us: One of the most discussed chapters in Cindy Jacobs's excellent book, Possessing the Gates of the Enemy is titled, "Flaky Intercession."

She describes the flaky intercessors as "men and women who, for a variety of reasons, drift outside biblical guidelines in their zeal for prayer.

They bring reproach on their ministries and confusion and division in the church."

I have such a high regard for intercessors that I hate to think any could be less than angelic, but the reality is different as we saw in the story of Pastor Paul Freedman earlier in the chapter. #71 Results of a Poor Choice

Fortunately, we are talking about a minority, and as books such as Cindy's circulate, the minority I hope will become smaller and smaller.

Intercessors can and do appear on the scene for wrong motives. I have a list of six of them that Doris and I have used as a checklist for filtering out the flakes.

1. Bragging rights. Some intercessors derive great pleasure from bragging that "I am the one who prays for the pastor." The larger the church and the more inaccessible the pastor is to ordinary church members, the more acute is the temptation to do this bragging.

The same will apply to any Christian leader, especially those who have national and international visibility.

2. A need for control. This may be the most pernicious and pervasive characteristic of a flaky intercessor.

We saw it clearly in the woman who prayed for Paul Freedman 
and caused disaster, in #71 Results of a Poor Choice. Cindy 
Jacobs tells of "Estelle," Whose prayer group "began to pray 
fervently that the pastor would "see the light and get aligned 
with God." —which was synonymous with getting aligned with

Estelle's mistake, Cindy says, was that "She felt that her

'revelations' were superior to what the pastor or elders heard 
from God."

She then goes on to explain how this tendency can be labeled

as an "Absolom spirit." Need for control is very dangerous and 
should not be tolerated in a prayer partner if it ever arises.

3. Lust and seduction. It is sad but true that some women 
who may or may not be true intercessors are tempted 
by the lusts of the flesh. They are astute enough to recognize 
the prayer partner relationship as a potential pathway 
toward seduction.

Most pastors have developed defense mechanisms against 

allowing this to happen in the counseling relationship, but 
some may be blindsided by trusted prayer partners.

One woman tried this one on me, but fortunately she was not 

very good at it! In fact Doris sensed her intentions almost the 
moment she passed through her outer office into mine.

This is not just a little flakiness; it is a lot!

4. Sentimentalism. "Praying for our pastor would be a lovely 

thing to do. I would love to try this. I think I could help 
the pastor so much by praying regularly."

Statements like this reflect a low level of understanding of 

intercession in general, and wrong motives in particular.

5. Pride. Wrongly motivated 
intercessors are not able to handle 
the joy and spiritual stimulation that 
come from hearing from God and 
praying His will into being through 
the pastor.

Consequently they think more highly of themselves than they ought to think.

Almost all recognized intercessors have had battles with pride 

within themselves, and most are on guard against it constantly. 
Whenever pride raises its ugly head, they immediately confess it 
and tear down the stronghold.

Some seek help from other intercessors. But sadly some do fall
prey to spiritual pride. It comes out in many ways, one of  the 
most destructive being a tendency to gossip about the pastor 
or about inside details of the ministry.

6. Personal emotional needs. The ministry of intercession 
seems to be a magnet for emotionally disturbed people. 
Prayer leaders are well aware of this and they have developed 
ways and means of handling these people without further 
compounding their emotional problems.

But when they also seek personal relationships as prayer 
partners, the dangers are obvious. Those who think "If I 
can only be the pastor's prayer partner, I'll be healed," 
need to search for other more viable forms of therapy.

I do not enjoy thinking about or writing about the deficiencies 
of intercessors. I much prefer to describe their positive 
characteristics as I will in the next chapter.

(Emphasis added, and Google image)

#84  Filtering Out the Flakes, in the 
series taken from C. Peter Wagner’s 
book, PRAYER SHIELDHow to 
intercede for pastors, Christian 
leaders and others on the spiritual 
frontlines. (pgs. 157-159) 
by Regal Books

Let’s pray:

   Father, we ask for Your help, to guide our pastors and leaders in their choosing prayer partners.

   May they be discerning, as well as prayerful, in considering someone to trust with the concerns of the church.

   Open my eyes to the need, and help me support them with prayer every day, and be available to Your Spirit's urgings, to pray for them.

   I ask this in the Might Name of Jesus, Amen.

I've begun to list healing prayers, which I've taken from Charles and Frances Hunter's books, How To Heal the Sick, and Healing Handbook. I invite you to check out the post that I've started, Healing Prayers for the Sick I have several posted, and many more to add.

Today’s Bible verse: Ps. 29:4 "The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is full of majesty."

Today’s quote: Darlene Schacht - “The most important thing that parents can do for their children is to have a Christ-centered marriage”.  

Some thoughts today: Real ministry is generational. God has 
ordained the family to fulfill His mission naturally and spiritually, 
through the home environment, training, and example.

- Our children can accomplish much more than we could, through their training in the ways of God, and sending them out to where they'll be in other environments we could not reach. Through their spiritual and given training, they can influence their "world" for Christ.

- Make praying for others' healing a lifestyle. Don't be afraid of anything when you speak in the Name of Jesus.

17th- Saturday’s post:  Lessons Learned from My Dog  Judy Doyle

18th- Sunday's post:  Lessons From a Spider  Barb Suiter

18th- evening's post:  A Life Call  Bonnie Champagne 

20th- Tuesday's post:   #85  A Profile of a Personal Intercessor  C. Peter Wagner

A popular post:  The Prayer Womb Francis Frangipane tells us, "The reality what God has planned will always manifest first in the prayer life of His intercessors. When you hear from God and then pray His Word, you are having an impact on the as-yet-unformed essence of life with the Spirit of God Himself!" (for comments)
Where authors and readers come together!

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