Intercessory Prayer

The Intercessory Prayer for 11 October 2020

Deacon Arlene Burton offers the Intercessory Prayer for 11 October 2020.

Brothers, Sisters and Friends we hope you are well. However, if you are not, please let us know.

The issue of forgiveness is like an adhesive strip. It has been holding us. It seems we will be dealing with it for a longer period than I had envisioned. I am relying and depending on the Holy Spirit’s guidance because a number of persons have been affected by the way we have been openly dealing with this issue. They are being given the opportunity to be delivered and heal past and present hurts. We give God all of the glory, honour and praise for what He is doing through this medium.

I spoke with someone who read the writings and she is so grateful for them especially during these challenging times. She has to be processing her emotions that emerge from some uncomfortable experiences at work. It has been a rough environment for her. She has to be trying hard to regularly forgive and move on. She said something to me that was really important concerning the Apostle Paul’s disposition in dealing with what happened to him in Corinth. She was able to connect with Paul because of the lack of appreciation and criticisms that he faced (2 Corinthians 10, 11). Although it was so many eras ago, it came alive for her. She was awakened by the fact that aspects of his reality then bear similarities to her current situation. We appreciate her sharing so that the rest of us can benefit.

I was going to say something else about connecting with Paul but I felt it necessary to go off and look at the way we view and connect with the Word of God. The Bible contains the Word of God. It is based on two covenants between God and His people, the Old and New Testament. The list of individual books included in the Bible was judged as authoritative. Those books gained the status of ‘Holy Scriptures.” Some may use the word canonization to describe this process. The canon is described as the “reed,” or “rod” which signifies a measuring stick. Therefore, the Bible is the rule of authority or standard for the Christian for faith and practice (Holman, 2012).

You will find that there is divergence and inclusion of other books by some groups. There are still arguments that are studied based on views of the Bible. For example, John Calvin was a very popular French Protestant Reformer whose views a number of scholars used as a reference in their deliberations. There is also what I call “unending views,” wherein scholars keep quoting other scholars on an area of study and there is no conclusion. Is there a place for this type of study? Of course! We may become caught in a net of discussions and the practice aspect of our beliefs get lost if we are not careful. Thus, the Holy Spirit is not given that opening to work in and through our lives.

Some people, even Christians, tell me that the Bible is history. It is about the people of Israel, especially as it relates to the Old Testament writings. They do not think that it should have anything to do with them. This is what they have garnered from teachings so it becomes difficult for them to connect their lives with the Word.

Let me also say that in everything we do there is a context. We have to evaluate, understand and appropriately apply the Word to our lives. Guess what? We need to diligently study, seek God, and allow His Spirit to counsel and guide us in all that we think, do and say. It requires time. In a number of instances, we never thought that there was enough time but Covid-19 experience has taught us otherwise. Some persons have been honest, and said to me that they are still fighting the building up of that personal relationship with God. I appreciate the openness but I am encouraging us to move beyond this point.

We may have hitches, fear, pain and headaches when it comes to praying, talking to God, meditating on our devotionals and studying His Word. Yet, the time we spend in other forums far surpasses. Some people will talk for hours rather than sit at God’s feet and connect with Him in the same time period and manner. Yet, we wonder what is wrong with the church. The Holy Spirit has equipped us with great talents and gifts. We are blessed and highly favoured but too many times we allow ourselves to be distressed and driven away into what I call “the land of irrelevance.” It is time for us to ‘Wake up, and allow God!” I do not exclude self.   

There is a point I need to address. Remember that God is not just for the Israelites. Paul and Barnabas remind us of this.

Then Paul and Barnabas answered them boldly. “We had to speak the word of God to you first. Since you reject it and do not consider yourselves worthy of eternal life, we now turn to the Gentiles. For this is what the Lord has commanded us, “I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.”

Acts 13:46-47 (NIV)

Here they were quoting Isaiah (Isaiah 49:6). “When the Gentiles heard this, they were glad and honoured the word of the Lord; and all who were appointed for eternal life believed.” (Acts 49:48, NIV).

At an event in the Jerusalem Council Peter also alluded to the position of the Gentiles.

“…Brothers, you know that some time ago God made a choice among you that the Gentiles might hear from my lips the message of the gospel and believe. God, who knows the heart, showed that he accepted them by giving the Holy Spirit to them, just as he did to us. He did not discriminate between us and them, for he purified their hearts by faith.”

Acts 15:7-9 (NIV)

We may be referred to as Gentiles. Some people say they are Israelites. Regardless of the banner of identity we want to take, the fact is that we are people of God. The journey and relationship between God and the people of Israel can be daily lessons for us to allow God to use in molding us to be better Christians. This relationship teaches us about the nature and expectation of God concerning His people, among other things.

The relationship between Jesus Christ and His disciples has demonstrated to us the practice of our faith. It did not stop there. The Spirit of God was sent to us. It did not stop there. After He ascended into heaven, His disciples carried on His work, through the power of the Holy Spirit. It should not stop here. We are here to take from His Word, making it a meal that is needed for our daily existence. We are also called to share this meal and live Christ-like lives through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Let us go back to the Apostle Paul’s experience and the person I mentioned in the beginning. Paul was obviously hurt (2 Corinthians 10, 11) and expressed his feelings in a way that made him uncomfortable. He could have walked away but continued knowing that his dependency was on God for commendations and rewards. The person kept saying to me “what Paul went through felt real”. She was filled with emotions and said that “it felt so real” to her based on her current circumstance. Her hurts are not just based on current experiences. Many times we block the work of God to “protect” our hurts because it is too painful to release them. At times there is inconsistency in the way we function, in the things we say and do, in the different spheres of our lives.

Brethren and Friends many of us are experiencing hurts which tend to be concealed, automatically seeping through our attitudes and behaviours. Lack of forgiveness has been crippling us leading to sensitivity among us in the body of Christ. We deal with the world in the same manner, so they doubt our beliefs.  

How then should we proceed? Paul also tells us that:

“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness,so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

2 Timothy 3:16-17 (NIV)

When we allow the work of God in us, and the Word of God to work in us, we allow for healing, and progress. When we spend time with God, He happily works through us. Will it be easy? Nope! Every minute of every experience will be worth it. Think about it…and meditate….

Let us pray

Heavenly Father, we thank You for Your mercies that are new each morning. Great is Your faithfulness, O God. We thank You Lord that even when we are faithless, You remain faithful for Your name sake. We thank You Lord for the air that we breathe. Lord, we thank You for waking us up in our right minds. We thank You for providing for us. We thank You for protecting us each day. Lord, we thank You.

Lord, we praise and honour Your name. We give You all glory, honour and praise. You are worthy to receive glory. You deserve the glory.

Lord, we praise You. Hallelujah!

Lord, we come in the name of Jesus Christ asking that You have mercy on us, as individuals, families (church and biological), communities, and as a country. We ask that You forgive all of our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. Help us to grant mercy even as You have granted us mercy.

Out of the depths we cry, O Lord, have mercy.

Lord, we thank You for another week and ask for Your guiding hand and protection in all of our circumstances. Lord, we ask for Your provision and favour as we proceed through each experience.

Remember our church leaders and congregants. Lord, have mercy on us. Empower us to be the people of God, called to do Your works in a way that pleases and honours You.

Hear our cry O Lord.

Lord, we lift up our country and ask for Your continued mercy on us. We ask that You grant our leaders the wisdom, knowledge, boldness, courage and understanding needed for each experience. Lord, let there be transparency and accountability among them as they pursue each task. Grant us the resources we need, and protect and sustain our economies.

Lord, we ask for Your mercies upon every world leader as they grapple with the multiplicity of disasters being experienced. Lord, turn the hearts of humankind to You and help them to know the true God.  

The Honourable Prime Minister of Jamaica Andrew Holness, Minister of Health and Wellness, Christopher Tufton, Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Nigel Clarke, health workers and support staff, Minister of Education, Youth and the Environment, Fayval Williams. Minister of National Security, Horace Chang and his team, Minister of Justice, Delroy Chuck. We remember also the judges in our congregation: Paula Blake Powell and Grace Henry McKenzie.

Lord, as we face the issue of crime and violence, we continue to ask for Your divine intervention. Dear God, deliver and protect us from the schemes and strategies of criminal acts that threatens us. Help us dear Lord.

Lord, we pray for those who are physically and emotionally hurting in one way or another. We ask for Your deliverance and restoration. You understand our pain and sufferings. Today, we cast our cares on You and ask for Your healing.

Lord, we remember those among us who are on the usual sick and shut-in list, as well as Sisters Iris Lawrence, Lelith James, Jennifer Nicholson, Virginia Muir, Marville (Cherry) Murray (Sister Iris Lawrence’s daughter), Janet Chen-Young, Joyce Bailey, Lucille Alexander, Jhada Graham, Ethlyn Atkins, Cherrie Lee, Brother George Gabbidon, and Andrew Robinson (Sister Claire Robinson’s son), Brother Danville Japp’s father, Mr. Isaiah Japp, and any family member who is currently struggling with the Covid-19 virus. We mention especially our Sister Rachael Dixon and her family members in Mandeville who are fighting the battle of the Covid-19 disease.

Lord, we remember those who are mourning, especially our Sisters Sandra Bucknor Jones, Sharon Lynch and Jehan Johnson, as well as Brother Andrew Getton.

Help us O Lord.

Fill us with Your peace and embrace us with Your love as we give thanks, in Jesus’ name.


Our Weekly Prayers are for everyone. Therefore, if you are also in need of prayer or comfort, please contact us with your request. We would be so very happy to share with you.

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