I was beyond upset. Just a few days prior, one of my sisters-in-Christ had confided a deep trauma to me. I was enraged at the violence done to her. My heart was burning within me as I prayed for her protection and healing, for her full restoration and recompense for what was stolen from her. My prayers were powerful and good. Yet, my heart continued to burn within me for something more. I had no idea what that something more could be. Everything I prayed over her was right on target with the Father’s heart for her. I knew that, deep within my soul, and yet…something more ached to be prayed.
Unable to focus on my work, I stepped out of my office on the eleventh floor of a midtown high-rise, walked down the hall to the stairwell and headed down the eleven flights of stairs hoping a walk would clear my head and bring me the peace I was seeking. I stomped down on every step as I went down the long stairwell as if I with each stomp I could pound out the anger surging through me. As I rounded one of the many landings on the stairwell, my brain still swimming from the righteous indignancy stirred up from what I’d heard her tell me, then out of nowhere I was slammed with a powerful thought. This one shook me to my core because I knew that it was what I needed to do.
I could feel the strength and potency of this prayer building up within me. It certainly gave vent to the enraged feelings that had been boiling in my heart for several days now. And so, I began to pray for the people who had harmed my friend. Not the tame kind of prayers that gently waft through the air on their way up to Heaven. No, I was angry about the violence. God was angry about the violence. This prayer needed to storm through the supernatural realm with its own rent of righteous vengeance aimed against the enemy of us all. Only that would do.
With holy yet violent words I cried out for the salvation of these people who had committed horrific acts against my sister-in-Christ. I screamed and yelled such words that tore through the heavens as I demanded and advocated for their restoration and healing. No more would the devil lay claim to these people. No more would they work to advance the devil’s wicked agenda to destroy all humanity. I prayed for these people to be so completely restored that they would be wholly and utterly infused with a new passion, one that would turn them into powerful warriors for the Kingdom. Now, they would stop harming others and themselves. Now, they would bring restoration where they once brought violence and destruction. Now, they would play for our team.
They would come into the Kingdom for such a time as this and to do mighty acts of valor and vindication and victory. Like modern day Sauls turned into Pauls, they would advance the Kingdom further than any today thought possible. Their testimony would turn the world on its head in shock and awe at what God can do with anyone, anytime, anywhere and anyway He wants. Nothing and no one is beyond His redemptive mercy and love.
His grace is only more glorious as seen in the worst of us. We don’t deserve His mercy, but He deserves to give it to us and have us humbly receive it. Our stories, our traumas, our testimonies reveal who God is through what He has done for us and that He chose us when we were so far off from Him that we were unrecognizable as humans, seemingly beyond all hope or saving.
God sees our hearts. He knows what lies dormant within us, waiting to be awakened by His love and mercy. He loves us even before we love ourselves, when we are utterly unlovable and wreaking havoc on His creation and any human being in our path. His grace arrests our fears and unshackles our souls. His mercy offends our minds and inflames our hearts to extend the same mercy to others, to everyone, to anyone, and especially to those who walk in our old prison cells.
None of us is without sin, without a past, without stories of harm that we’ve done to others. We all need a Savior. We all need someone to pray for us. We all need to be broken out of the prison that the devil keeps trying to hold us in. We all need God’s love to break us free. Will you join me in praying for the unlovely, unloving and unlovable?
We need to take them back from the devil. We need to advocate for their release from fear’s prison. We need to be the ones who stand in the gap, not just because someone stood in the gap for us when we needed it, but also because the Lord wants everyone to be restored to Him. It’s what He wants, so it’s what I want, too. How about you?
If you’re looking for more warrior words and encouragement for the spiritual fray, then check out my upcoming book entitled ‘jugular: words of warfare’.