And he who searches our hearts knows the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for God’s people in accordance with the will of God. Romans 8:27
Sometimes it’s all we can do to pray for those who we know need Him. In a recent trip to a neighboring city, I was able to experience just that. I went with a few teammates, two of whom can speak Chinese. It was a humbling experience to hear them share the Truth with people of that city, Hui people who live their lives believing they are good when in reality they’re in dire need of Jesus. Not being able to hold full conversations with people and tell them about our Lord is difficult, especially when I think about the number of people we saw there who have never heard the Gospel. I’m heartbroken for them, and part of me feels like I can’t do anything to help them…But God reminded me that we can always pray.
As my teammates spoke with those we met, I prayed that the Spirit would guide their words and that He would open the eyes of those my teammates shared the Truth with. We often overlook the power of prayer, but it’s one of the most important things we can do. And He guides us even in that! His Spirit intercedes for us in accordance with God’s will, and for that I thank Him.
In the city was a huge square, a place where the people hung out; we saw people flying kites, there was what could accurately be described as a dance party that took place at one point, there were people just walking about. Near the square was a mosque, which we visited and where we saw the devotion with which many Hui people live their lives. One of our teammates was able to speak with some of the men in the mosque; one of them was very knowledgeable and essentially tried converting our teammate. In that city and elsewhere in our region we’ve seen this devotion as well as its opposite – There are many Hui who are devout simply because that’s the way they were raised, but they don’t actually know much about what they say they believe. The fact that they’re devoted to something that will crumble at their deaths or upon His return – and that they don’t recognize that fact – is hard to take in. But we have hope! The same Spirit that intercedes for us in prayer is the Spirit of Him who raised Jesus from the dead (Romans 8:11) – God has the power to bring the dead to life, to bring people into His kingdom; all we have to do is obey Him, and sometimes that simply means pray.
Through our visit to this city, God showed us that though we may feel as if we can’t do much to bring people into His kingdom because we don’t speak much of the language, we can still pray for the Hui, anytime and anywhere. We can pray that we will boldly proclaim the Truth and that we will all remember the power of prayer.
As Paul tells the Colossians in Chapter 4, “Devote yourselves to prayer, being watchful and thankful…pray for us, too, that God may open a door for our message, so that we may proclaim the mystery of Christ, for which I am in chains. Pray that I may proclaim it clearly, as I should” (2-4). Though I may not be in chains as Paul was, his requests for prayer and open doors are just as applicable, and I hope you will pray the same for all of the Lord’s workers.