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Committed Sustained Informed - Intercession
A New Season
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"A New Season"

"Mission" (Relational Purpose: Part 8)

          Contemplative, communal intercession is our primary ministry. In the last teaching we spoke of contemplative prayer. In this teaching the focus will be on the ministry of intercession.   Intercessory prayer is prayer to the Father, in union with Jesus, led and empowered by the Holy Spirit for others. In the Roman Missal of the Catholic Church, one of the quiet prayers of the priest before communion time says in part:

"Lord Jesus Christ, Son of the living God, who, by the will of the Father and the work of the Holy Spirit, through your death gave life to the world..." (Roman Missal, p. 520)

Intercession is the life-giving, Spirit-led and Spirit filled prayer of Jesus in the presence of the Father. This dying of the Lamb is both the Father's will and the Spirit's work. It involves the entire Trinity, for it is about love. Authentic love is always for others, and it is modeled after the love shared among the three divine persons of the Trinity. This is the ministry of the Lamb who takes away the sin of the world--The Lamb who was slain. This ministry comes forth from the wellspring of divine Love that flows from the pierced heart of Jesus.

          Intercession is very much a ministry of the mystery of "Christ in you" (Col. 1:27). As we allow Jesus to continue to live within us we enter into his ministry of intercession. The Lamb comes again to live within us to continue his priestly ministry. It is the mystical, priestly ministry of Jesus. It is his priestly ministry of connecting humanity with God, of bringing about reconciliation. The Lamb continues within us to reconcile humanity with God (reconciling heaven and earth) from within us. United with the Lamb our life and lifestyle reach out to reunite all humanity to God.

          Jesus desires to live out the mystery of his Incarnation again and to take up his cross but now within us. He still remains the Word made flesh. Intercession is the 'flesh and blood' ministry of the Lamb, and it cannot take place anywhere except through humanity. As we allow Jesus to live in us, he continues to live out his mystery of redemption again, now through us. He still has access to the Father but now it is in, with and through us.

          Jesus takes us in Spirit to where he is at the right hand of the Father to intercede with him in the Father's presence. Jesus chooses to need our human bodies "to make intercession" at the Father's right hand. With intercessory prayer we allow Jesus to pray to the Father from deep within us. We participate as intimately as possible in his ministry by offering spiritual sacrifices with and through the Lamb. Intercession brings other people into holiness and union with God because it brings them to God.

          Everything about intercession is for others because it is the ministry of the Lamb, whose life, death and resurrection have been for the sake of others. We are victim lamb intercessors, life-bearers, so that others may have life. As such we often become the victims of our own intercession as Jesus was ( see John 17) because true to the word of God, "No one has greater love than this, to lay down one's life for one's friends" (John 15:13).

Questions:

1)   Are there any ways in which I struggle to allow Jesus--rather than myself--to live within me ?

2)   Can I recall a situation where I became a victim of my own intercessory prayer?

Scriptures:

Any scripture from the text; Rom. 12:1; Eph. 2:18; Heb. 9:15,24

"TWO-ZERO-ONE-EIGHT, TIME TO EXPIATE"

PLEASE VISIT "THIS WEEK'S BURNING ISSUES" ON THE "EVENTS" PAGE

Remember that we must be a praying Church: Am I praying for our Church and our world?

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