Summary: Intercession that's rooted in love can triggers divine intervention.
A PRAYER FOR REBEKAH
"21 Now Isaac pleaded with the Lord for his wife, because she was barren; and the Lord granted his plea, and Rebekah his wife conceived. 22 But the children struggled together within her; and she said, “If all is well, why am I like this?” So she went to inquire of the Lord. 23 And the Lord said to her: “Two nations are in your womb, Two peoples shall be separated from your body; One people shall be stronger than the other, And the older shall serve the younger.” 24 So when her days were fulfilled for her to give birth, indeed there were twins in her womb." Genesis 25:21-24.
Isaac and Rebekah were married for years without a child. He could have chosen to have children with other women, like his father. But his love for his wife drove him into prayer. Isaac prayed to the Lord for his wife. He loved her dearly. Genesis 24:67. Isaac saw the pain, ridicule, and reproach his wife faced and took action. Love is not only a feeling; it is action. Isaac showed his love for Rebekah by being patient and praying for her. He called on the Lord on behalf of his wife. He used the garment of prayer to cover her shame. Isaac honored Rebekah by covering her in prayer. Love is not an emotion; it is a choice! He prayed because he knew the promises God made to Abraham about descendants. So he prayed and trusted God to fulfill those promises.
"Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ." Galatians 6:2.
Often, when we are facing difficulties, we need others to stand with and pray for us. Without their prayers, we’ll often get discouraged in trials or give up in the waiting seasons of life. Perhaps Rebekah had given up, but Isaac lifted her spirit in prayer. So are you petitioning God on behalf of your spouse? The needs of your spouse should always be your concern. Isaac loved his wife and prayed to the Lord for her. Intercessory prayer that's motivated by love. Love will cause us to always have the right motives when interceding for others. But if you lack love, kindness, and compassion for your spouse, chances are you are not praying for him or her.
"9 Then his wife said to him, “Do you still hold fast to your integrity? Curse God and die!” 10 But he said to her, “You speak as one of the foolish women speaks. Shall we indeed accept good from God, and shall we not accept adversity?” In all this Job did not sin with his lips." Job 2:9-10.
Amidst the ashes of his once-successful life, Job held on to hope. His life had completely fallen apart! Job was broken mentally, financially, emotionally, spiritually, and even physically as his health was attacked. Yet he held on to God! Sadly instead of encouraging Job to faithfully endure, his wife talked him into giving up.
"Strengthen the weak hands, And make firm the feeble knees." Isaiah 35:3.
Who's holding up your weak prayer hands and strengthening your feeble knees? Your spouse has the power to be your greatest help or cause you the most heartache. Your encouragement has the power to give your spouse the courage to reach new heights. Be your spouse’s best friend. Complete them. Learn to become more understanding. Build each other up. Don't belittle or demean your spouse. Be with your spouse through the ups and downs of life. Give him or her better advice than Job’s wife did. Never give up on your spouse. Reaffirm your love and commitment often. Pray for your spouse; it is an unselfish expression of love. Pray that your spouse would have a burning desire to know the Lord more closely. Pray he or she would not be discouraged in his pursuit of God. Pray for endurance. Pray for spiritual growth. Pray that where you have different opinions, God would help you reach a consensus. Pray that you could be quick to forgive when your spouse hurts you.
THE MINISTRY OF PRAYER:
"Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men," 1 Timothy 2:1.
In this passage, Paul encourages Timothy and the people to whom he preaches, to carry out the important ministry of prayer. We are to be praying people. Prayer is our greatest ministry! When we hear and see the pain of those near us. God calls us to open our hearts and to pray for them. Prayer is our weapon; it is our strength. All believers are called to the ministry of intercession. We pray for our family, friends, church, community, and nation. We are in God’s perfect will when we pray for others.