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I don't know about you, but I'm on a quest to become a more self-less pray-er, so I have been looking for something that would be sort of an "Intercessory Prayer for Dummies." My search led me to one of the Classic Christian authors on Prayer, Andrew Murray, and to his book, "The Ministry of Intercession".

Not everyone as we know, is into prayer, much less Intercessory Prayer. I've been asking myself why some are such strong and persistent prayer warriors while others are not. Andrew Murray's book shed some light on this for me the other day. In one chapter, he is extracting "the marks of an Intercessor" from Jesus' teaching on prayer in Luke 11.

He says, "...the marks of the true intercessors as the parable taught us" are:

1) A sense of the need of souls

2) A consciousness of personal impotence

3) Faith in the power of prayer

4) Courage to persevere inspite of refusal

5) The assurance of abundant reward

When I evaluate these marks in my own life, I see myself lacking, especially when it comes to "courage to persevere inspite of refusal". I'm persistent all right, but not necessarily in prayer. I guess I wonder if persistence is a matter of continuing to to ask for something to happen, how many times do you ask? I do not see God as being forgetful so I wonder why persistence is needed. Could it be that the persistence has to do with the process of refining our requests or growing our faith?

As I was finishing this chapter, I was struck by the following quote, "Shall men of the world sacrifice ease and pleasure in their pursuits, and shall we be such cowards and sluggards as not to fight our way through to the place where we can find liberty for the captive and salvation for the perishing?" Perhaps the answer to my question regarding persistence is here.

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Comment by Stan Taylor on November 24, 2010 at 1:16am
Good day to everyone,

I am a newbie to Pray! Network, but not a newbie to intercession. Thank God
for this ministry and for every intercessor that He uses for His glory!

The key to self-less prayer is "abiding in Christ", with a heart open to Him to allow us to be continually taught by the Lord to pray, every day of our lives. The Lord birthed me in the ministry of intercession back in 1991. The Lord stirred me up to pray for others after reading Andrew Murray's "With Christ in the School of Prayer" which was given to me by my girlfriend (now wife, Rachel). This classic tool is packed with scriptural references and a vital reference for every serious intercessor to have in his/her library. Although the book is no longer in print, you can obtain it by clicking on:
http://www.full-proof.org/wp-content/uploads/2010/04/With-Christ-in...

Pray for me, as I pray for you that we will all "abide in Christ" that we may
the perfect will of the Father to intercede for others according to the heart of God.
(John 15:1-7)

Sincerely yours in Christ,

Stan
Comment by Gail E. Dudley on November 5, 2010 at 7:57am
Self-less prayer must be in the atmosphere. This has been heavy on my heart and when I wrote my book, I added a chapter on that area specifically. When I notice many speaking on the same area, I realize it's God speaking! I'm joining you, Jenni.
Comment by Lewis Turner on November 5, 2010 at 12:31am
Jenny

Just a thought--persistence is a trait of some intercessors and there are many different types of intercessors--one notably is crisis intercession. They will pray through an urgent crisis, but may not continue in prayer after the crisis. Other intercessors have long term prayer assignments. With these persistence may be more of an attitude of the heart motivated by God's love because "the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us." Rom 5:5. As you pray for others, seek to allow God's Love to help you continue to pray for others so they will have salvation or be set free.

You have presented a good question, one coming from your heart.

Blessings,

Lewis Turner
Intercessor Group

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