I was speaking with a young woman not long ago about persevering in prayer concerning some of the issues she was facing in her life. She had been praying for several years about certain things but not seeing a breakthrough and after hearing me speak on prayer, she had some questions.
When I speak about prayer or declaring and decreeing things in agreement with the word of God, I often tell people do not stop but continue on until the breakthrough you seek is manifest. The young woman told me that her pastor explained that if you keep praying over an issue in such a way, it means that you are in doubt and unbelief or fear. He told her that she should pray about something and then wait to see God move. He said that she should not pray the way that I suggested. The only problem was that she was weary and needed a breakthrough to these issues in her life.
The odd thing is that I have some level of agreement with her pastor. Yes, if your faith is actually operating at that level then you do not need to keep lifting up the issue before the Lord. The problem is that many of us are not walking yet in the fullness of His promises. So what do we do?
Over the years, as the Lord taught me about prayer and spiritual warfare, I saw that there seems to be a progression of faith that occurs. Most of us don’t immediately get born again and walk in the power of Elijah, but rather we are taught of the Lord and grow into maturity and learn to walk in Him. In prayer, it seems that we first learn that we can address things in the authority we have been given. After we learn to walk in that authority, there will be an increase and we will see greater and more immediate manifestations of God’s power. An anointing to deal with certain issues comes and it isn’t born by accident but rather through our relationship with the Lord and spending time with Him in the secret place.
As our relationship with Him becomes closer, we will see His presence manifest more tangibly in our lives so that His glory will overshadow us and healings and deliverances and other needs will be met just because He is with us / in us in such a way. At that level so to speak, we may not have to say a word.
I must tell you though that this progression does not take forever at all. It is just a matter of yielding to Him and allowing Him to work in us.
Seeing the Unseen
Aside from seeing the reality of this in my own life, why would I believe such a thing? Well…. The scriptures for one thing. The Bible talks about such things as praying without ceasing, the authority we have in Christ, the word of God not returning void, and the anointing breaks the yoke. Also, in many encounters with the Lord He gave me understanding about seeing breakthrough in the realm of the spirit and I will share one such lesson with you.
Not in My House!
One night as I was praying before bed, I looked up by our bedroom doorway and saw a rather tall and wicked looking evil spirit standing there. I thought to myself, there is no reason for you to be in MY house! I began to rebuke this spirit and as I did, I could see no reaction from him whatsoever. He looked at me with contempt and the expression on his face looked as if my words had no effect upon him. I continued to rebuke him and after about twenty minutes he left.
I had seen this happen a few times and so I really sought the Lord for an answer. I know we have authority. Why was this spirit seemingly not affected by the words I spoke?
The Lord told me that the enemy is a deceiver. The spirit wanted me to believe that my words had no power against him, but the reality was quite the opposite. The Lord told me that many times evil spirits will “hang on” because they know that many believers will grow weary and stop. The spirits know that if they can hang on for just a few minutes, they won’t have to leave. The Lord said this is true on many levels. As we pray for the sick, if we don’t see a quick manifestation many times we stop or wait or say “It wasn’t his time” or “He didn’t have enough faith” etc.. But that is not the case. It is just a deception of the enemy. We have been given authority in Christ in the heavenlies and the word of God says that every knee shall bow. Every knee must bow to the name of Jesus Christ.
If you have been waiting for a manifestation of the answer to your prayer, don’t ever stop! It isn’t unbelief or fear but rather the knowledge and trust that what God says is true. Your words spoken in agreement with His word are powerful beyond belief.
Like King Hezekiah, turn your face to the wall and like Daniel, keep lifting up your prayer to the Lord. The Lord heard you from the first day. Your answer is coming!
- Michael Van Vlymen