Having a chuckle here, but “Lord, I so repent of this fool” was a skill probably born of working too much in customer service. Regardless, there was this need to vent my frustration, to cleanse myself of unpleasantness, and so “Lord, I so repent of this fool” was born. Took a while for those words to really resonate, for me to see the wisdom there, for the light bulb to come on.
For those who think “fools” is somehow offensive, let me just double down here and assure you “fools” really is the kinder, gentler, more gracious way of putting it.
Eventually I had to ask some questions, like why do I even feel the need to repent on behalf of someone else? I sure didn’t do it! And that’s exactly what I found myself doing, expressing some Godly sorrow for other people’s indigestion, for untreated high blood pressure, for deep spiritual wounding. Lord, I’m so sorry we failed this person, I’m so sorry we created this situation, I’m so sorry we are so inept at bringing people back into good mental, physical, and spiritual health.
And so what first began as a somewhat humorous coping skill, a way of creating distance between me and some problem people, soon blossomed into some real intercession. “Intercession” simply means praying on behalf of others, but it also involves providing cover, protection, advocating on their behalf. The Cambridge dictionary defines intercession as, “the act of using your influence to make someone in authority forgive someone else or save them from punishment.”
We aren’t talking salvation here or bigger theological issues. Only Jesus saves, only the Lord forgives, but we can be an intercessor, we can be an advocate, we can be like a public defender in court using our influence to protect and advocate for someone else.
When the Lord said, you’re an intercessor, I completely balked, I choked. Like, uhm no! What influence? I can’t “make” an authority, God in this case, “do” anything. To appeal to His favor would mean, I must first have His favor myself. I felt kind of like, I’d testify on your behalf, but it’s probably going to just make your situation worst, because now God’s going to see my name attached to your mess, and you’re going to be even more guilty by association. Like, you sure don’t want to bring all your gang banger friends to court as a character reference….
So there were some big personal issues, things that had to be reconciled, authority that had to be stepped into, and receiving the Lord’s favor myself with trust and assurance. It’s been a real adventure, let me tell ya……
So the other day, in the midst of this bad cold and gloomy weather I was praying, Lord does it do any good? Does it really change anything? Does it even matter? That very afternoon I ran into a family I’ve been interceding for and the guy said, “I can’t believe it, but 2019 has been the best year my life! It’s like we just fell into this wormhole of goodness.”
Aha ha! Now that’s what I’m talking about, a total wormhole of goodness! I did what I always do when God suddenly answers my prayers, I completely missed my lip and poured tea down the front of me. They are postively glowing, that unmistakeable life and life abundant just flowing into some dark places. And they have absolutely no idea how much prayer and intercession has surrounded them.
So today I lift His name on high, I thank Him for answered prayers, for small beginnings, and for making His presence so known to me. But we aren’t stopping there, that “wormhole of goodness” isn’t really a “wormhole” at all, He’s a real person, a living, risen Lord, who wants nothing more than to come into your life and shine His favor on you.