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  • Writer's pictureShannon Bryant

Pray and Don't Give Up!

Updated: Oct 17, 2023




Encouragement for the Intercessor


One day Jesus was teaching, and Pharisees and teachers of the law were sitting there. They had come from every village of Galilee and from Judea and Jerusalem. And the power of the Lord was with Jesus to heal the sick.


Some men came carrying a paralyzed man on a mat and tried to take him into the house to lay him before Jesus. When they could not find a way to do this because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and lowered him on his mat through the tiles into the middle of the crowd, right in front of Jesus.

When Jesus saw their faith, he said, “Friend, your sins are forgiven.” Which is easier: to say, ‘Your sins are forgiven,’ or to say, ‘Get up and walk’?


But I want you to know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins.” So he said to the paralyzed man, “I tell you, get up, take your mat, and go home.” Immediately he stood up in front of them, took what he had been lying on and went home praising God. Everyone was amazed and gave praise to God. They were filled with awe and said, “We have seen remarkable things today.”

Luke 5:17-20, 23-26



This familiar account in the gospel of Luke is a powerful picture and demonstration of what genuine friendship looks like. Moreover, it is a compelling testament to perseverance and Jesus' response to the faith of a few good men pressing their way to get a paralytic man to Jesus to be healed.


These loyal and highly determined friends went to great lengths to get their friend to Jesus; the One they believed would heal him.


This account resonates deeply in my heart as it mirrors and is reminiscent of the call of the intercessor. Those who labor in the ministry of prayer, stand in the gap and get people and situations to the Lord in the spirit in prayer.


Whether it is families, nations, communities, the sick, the addicted, sex trafficking victims, the lost. etc., intercessors are vessels used by God to intercede in fervent, believing, determined, and persistent prayer.


As I pondered over this impactful passage I gleaned an invaluable lesson in faith, and persistent prayer and was blessed with some pretty powerful prayer principles that are in my heart to share with you in hopes that it will stir your heart and encourage you in your call to pray and don't give up.


Love

A sturdy foundation for fervent intercession is love. A love that is cultivated from being in union with the heart of the Father for people. When our hearts are united with God His love spills over into our hearts and produces prevailing passionate prayer that does not give up because love never gives up.


Love never gives up. 1 Corinthians 13:7


It appears that love would have been the foundation and the motivation in the hearts of the men who carried their feeble friend. Though Scripture does not say this specifically I believe their unshakeable commitment and perseverance give evidence.


These men went far and beyond to carry their friend and get him to Jesus to be healed and love had to compel them to go the distance with him despite the hindrances they encountered.




Just as when we pray for others, even those we may not know personally love has to compel us to be vigilant in carrying those we are believing God for in faithful prayer.


Like these unrelenting friends, we must persevere in faith. Don't grow weary in well doing. Believe that prayers sowed in the spirit will reap in the natural on behalf of others if we don't give up.

Agreement

In order for the friends to be able to successfully carry the paralyzed man they had to be in in agreement. How can two walk together unless they agree? (Amos 3:3) “If two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. (Matthew 18:19)


Just as the friends carried the man to Jesus when we partner with others in prayer to carry people, nations, and situations, in prayer we must be in agreement. One accord, one mind, one spirit according to the word, will, purposes, and sovereignty of God in the name above all names; Jesus Christ.


Desperate


These friends were desperate to get the paralyzed man to Jesus. There was no way they were giving up! It may have looked like an impossibility but their faith did not waver.


They attempted to get their friend inside the house but there was no room outside the door because of the crowd, but they kept pressing by faith having an unshakeable determination to follow through on their mission.


No matter how impossible things appeared they kept on pushing. Many times in intercession a person or a situation may look like an impossibility but we must persist and walk by faith, not by doubt or what it looks like.


Prayers birthed from heaven are sure to be answered here on earth.


Maybe you've been believing God for someone or some situation for an extended amount of time. I encourage you today to persevere in faith and not grow weary in your labor in prayer.


Know that the prayer birthed from heaven is sure to be answered here on earth. When God gives the prayer, He is sure to answer and the bonus is that while in waiting God is growing your faith, strengthening your endurance, developing your character, and stretching your trust and your ability to hope.


And hope does not put you to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into your hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to you. (Romans 5:5) Wait on the Lord. Be of good courage and at just the right time God in His sovereignty will answer.





Just as the men laid the man before Jesus we must be mindful to lay the burdens we carry before the Lord and leave them there lest we become heavily burdened. God's will is for us to pray in faith. A sure evidence of faith is rest. After we have carried the burden, the petition, the supplication, release it to God and believe Him for the outcome.


I know it can be difficult at times for the intercessor to release the burden because we "feel" a lot. I often say the intercessor's heart is like a purse, the bigger it is the more we carry in it but we must by the power of the Holy Spirit pray the burden through, and as the men lowered their paralyzed friend before Jesus, we are to lay the burdens down before the Lord.

Pressed

As mentioned earlier we see from this account that this was a really crowded situation. So much so that it looked like they couldn’t get through but they pressed on anyway. They were fully determined and kept it moving and they saw a way through the roof. Won't God make a way!


These friends saw the way but they still had more work to do. They had to break through the roof and pull some tiles off of it to make room to get their dear friend to Jesus.


It's the same when we pray. Things may look like an impossibility like there is no way but we must together keep pressing in by faith and garner a posture of sitting with God in a posture of prayer. To listen for strategy and instruction on how to pray. What to pray. Make God's Word the priority for it is a guide, lamp, and light to our paths in purposeful prayer. Prayers that are rooted in the Word of God are potent.


In the same way, yield to the Holy Spirit, the Spirit helps us in our weakness when we do not know what we ought to pray for He infuses our prayers, and empowers us to pray through, according to the will of God and He is faithful to make a way.


I am the way, and the truth and the life. ~ Jesus John 14:6a


The way to get their friend to Jesus for these loyal friends was to break through the roof. Similarly, those of us who labor in intercession must keep pressing in, in the spirit for a breakthrough for those we are carrying to God in persistent prayer as He leads us.


Pulling Down

The men together tore down the tiles off the roof to get the man to Jesus. Many times in prayer we may have to pray that strongholds will be torn/pulled down in the lives of those we are praying for so that their hearts, eyes, and ears will be opened so that they will be able to receive the healing, deliverance, salvation, freedom, love, the gospel of Jesus Christ.


For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh. For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ. 2 Corinthians 10:3-5

Faith

Jesus saw their faith. He saw their desperation. He saw their tenacity, commitment, and perseverance. And what was the very first thing He did? He forgives the man’s sins. Now I’m pretty sure that is not what his friends had in mind. They brought him there to be healed physically but Jesus saw their faith and did way more than they came for!


He healed their friend physically and He healed him spiritually. Glory be to our Blessed Savior who gives us more than we ask for, who is a Mighty Healer of soul and spirit!


The physical healing is temporary but the healing spiritually is eternal. This was a foreshadowing of what Jesus would accomplish on the Cross of Calvary. By His stripes, we are healed.



May our faith and prayers be so ignited to pray the same healing that we have received by the stripes of Jesus for others who are in need of His healing, grace, mercy, lavish love, and saving grace.


Arise

Jesus' final words to the healed man were, 'That you may know that the Son of Man has power on earth to forgive sins. Arise, take up your bed, and go home.


Today, I encourage the intercessors to arise! Don't give up! Walk in the spirit of faith and persevering prayer! Agree with God and join hearts with other intercessors and believe Him for the "impossible", the incomprehensible in unfainting prayer!


The man in this account was brought to Jesus because He was paralyzed physically but there are so many that we are believing God for who are paralyzed spiritually. Paralyzed with mental torment. Paralyzed with fear. Paralyzed with anxiety. Paralyzed with addictions. Paralyzed with past trauma.


Stuck in the murk and mire of condemnation. Paralyzed from rejection and abandonment. Immobilized with hopelessness. Lost sheep trapped in the thickets of this wicked world and its dark desires that are passing away.


The man in this account was crippled physically but there are many that we are praying for that are crippled spiritually. Children. Marriages. Families. Communities and even some churches!


Our nation is severely crippled. On the way to collapsing morally and spiritually. So as intercessors, we pray for God’s will to be done on earth as it is in heaven by faith, in agreement, persevering in the name of Jesus.


Just as with the paralytic, God is able to raise up prodigals! Raise up the lost! Raise up our families! Raise up our young men! Raise up our young women! Raise up and restore marriages! Raise up those on their bed of affliction! Raise up the tormented in mind! Raise up laborers in the harvest! Raise up and pour out upon His remnant to be strengthened, empowered to stand and work the fields of the harvest!


As intercessors, we have an integral part in this great work by interceding with unshakeable faith in strategic and prevailing prayers!


Dear friends and co-laborers in prayer, there is an urgency to sit with God in a place of prayer. To pray to the Lord of the harvest for more laborers. Crying out for souls. Stewarding them well in earnest prayer with faith that does not give up! Carrying them in prayer! Praying God's will to get them to Jesus!


Just as the tiles were torn off the roof, the veil of the temple was torn from top to bottom and now because of the shed blood of Jesus, we can go boldly before the throne of grace to obtain mercy and help for ourselves and others in their time of need.


And behold, the veil of the temple was torn in two from top to bottom; Matthew 27:51


The harvest is plentiful and we must frequent our prayer "closets" for strength, endurance, and incessant prayer that when we pray, and go into our room, and when we have shut our door, pray to our Father who is in the secret place; and our Father who sees in secret will reward us openly beyond what we've asked or imagined!


God is yet a God of miracles and confoundment. Believe that you will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of living for yourselves and the outworkings of answers to your prayers!



This is my prayer that you like the people who witnessed the miracle in Capernaum, the healing of the paralyzed man will be amazed at the goodness of the Lord. Give praise to God and be filled with awe and say, "We have seen remarkable things today!




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© Prayer Matters Ministries






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