Circa 2015 – 2019
In the Bible, we see that Jesus spent a lot of His time teaching and ministering to crowds or to His disciples. But He would retreat to the mountains to pray. There are times when I feel that my life has become prayerless. Those are the times when I feel distant or detached from God, and I do not like that at all. I would ask the Lord to restore to me the power and desire to pray.
He said to me one night,
“Come away, My beloved.”
I found a book with exactly that title. After reading it, He asked me to go to a place, high in the mountains, far far away from home. I brought a friend whom He said needed a good rest from her battles. There, I enjoyed my first personal retreat with him. The Lord continued to beckon me to go meet Him, one time to watch the sunset with Him at a mountain in China in the cold winter!
From that time on, I make it a point to go on a silent retreat once or twice each year; to my ‘cave’ – a place of quiet and rest – away from noise and demands of day to day life. Just to be alone with the Lord.
In COBS, we go on annual or semi-annual group retreats. We always ensure everyone has their own space and enjoy a period of silence to reflect, to hear God’s voice and to pray. These retreats often leave us renewed and recharged. And magically, everything falls into place and nothing feels too difficult after that.
There were times during worship in the Prayer Vault when He showed us visions or things in the spiritual and natural realm and led us into intercession and warfare prayer. Our intercession has helped calm typhoons, protect our loved ones from disasters or threats in different places, and, on certain occasions, rescue the sick or dying.
Many of these intercessions were not planned; they flowed as we worshipped God, without us really knowing what was happening out there at the time.
And a lot of times, He leads us to pray for His Church.
Jesus repeatedly said that we must be watchful and stand guard (Matthew 24:4,42 and Mark 13:5,9,33,35,37). He clearly told His disciples what the church will face in the end times in Matthew 24:
But he also said that if the Church stands firm to the end, it will be saved. And through this the gospel of the kingdom will be preached to the whole world (v13-14).
The Church often cautions us against being worldly but the Lord showed me that the world is actually very much in the Church. When our spiritual eyes and ears are open, we can expect to see a lot of these ugliness in the Church – deception, quarrels, competition, the religious spirit, ambition, vanity, lawlessness and the total disregard of God. And for that matter, even in any Christian organisation or community, ourselves included.
It is something that God has already predicted and warned us about, so we are not to be alarmed or disappointed. I would not waste my time or energy to be a part of any silly quarrel or politics. On Judgment Day, God will separate those who really know Him from those who do not. We are simply required to stand firm to the end.
Jesus teaches that the mark of discipleship is to love one another:
“So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.” John 13:34-35, New Living Translation (NLT)
I pray for eyes to be opened to see that the end-time battle is not ‘out there’, but within the Church, within us.
Loving one another will help us stand whilst others will get offended. May we expend heart and energy to love one another, that we may stand in the gap and pray for each other. Together in agreement, we can all be delivered from the evil that is coming, or has come, upon the Church.
The war is really in getting to stand, to speak less, to watch and pray, under the banner of the Lord’s great love.
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