If you are moved, passionate or perturbed by a certain issue, you might choose to start a petition. This formal written request attempts to organize a body of concerned citizens uniting over a common cause. While I have signed petitions in the past, I’ve never thought of prayer in this context. According to the apostle Paul, Christians should come together to petition God through concerts of prayer.
I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people—1 Timothy 2:1.
Growing up in a Roman Catholic church, I was taught prayer was suppose to be a private matter. Jesus reaffirms this in the Lord’s Prayer, Matthew 6:6. Nonetheless, Solomon professes in Ecclesiastes 3 that there is a time for everything. Thus, whether its drug addiction, suicide or violence, its time to petition God with other like minded individuals to cease these cancers of society.
Is anyone among you in trouble? Let them pray. Is anyone happy? Let them sing songs of praise, James 5:13.
In times of desperation, intercession is one of the last lines of defense. I’ve read several amazing testimonies from church members interceding on behalf of missionaries in the field. One of my favorites involves a group of believers witnessing to a tribe of head hunters. During one particular evening, this group’s village was surrounded, fearful for their lives. Yet, instantaneous prayers ushered angels into action, spooking these warriors away in a biblical like miracle. Though the situation you are currently encountering may seem dire, petition, prayer and intercession is the best solution to confront mounting issues in life.
by Jay Mankus