Have you ever noticed how one divine encounter can steer you unexpectedly onto a new path? Recently in the middle of a casual conversation, a prophetic minister from South Africa began to prophesy to me: "American prayer initiative—I'm hearing this loud. You must call the church back to prayer. It will be happening all over America. Bring America back to prayer. It will start small but it will go all over the place. It won't be fancy preachers. It is going to be people who know how to pray."
For 38 years, my husband, Steve, and I have led a ministry that communicates through the media what the Holy Spirit is doing in the world. We have followed and reported on the prayer movement and have actively prayed ourselves, but this prophetic word came as a call to rally the forces of God.
As Christians we need to realize that our nation is in a season of war—in both the natural and the spiritual realms. We must take our places in prayer and use the spiritual authority we have been given to bring God's kingdom and His will to Earth.
In a war, the special operations forces are a critical component of victory. You are a part of those forces! With eyes trained on the spiritual realm, you can see where the enemy is operating. Then you can come into agreement with God regarding His purposes, and His power will be released.
The primary key to effective prayer is intimacy with God. Intimacy doesn't come from spending a few minutes a day giving Him a list of desires; it develops as we spend time in worship and true fellowship with Him. From that place, we will pray His will.
Another key is understanding the power of the Word of God and learning to use it as a sword. The Bible tells us that "The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds" (2 Cor. 10:4, NIV). As we abide in Christ, we are equipped with the power of His name and can use it against the enemy.
Yet another powerful key we have is to agree with others. In addition to praying alone, we must set times to pray with a prayer partner or group. For the level of victory we desire in the natural and spiritual realms, we need to assemble and agree.
The outcome of this war will be personal. It will affect us and our children. We must throw off passivity, pick up our weapons and fight!
Joy F. Strang is the chief financial officer at Charisma Media.