Saturday, January 16, 2010

Day 16: A Way to Pray: Pray as a Watchman

“I have posted watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem; they will never be silent day or night...” (Isaiah 62:6).

God's greatest agency; man's greatest agency, for defeating the enemy and winning men back is intercession. -S. D. Gordon

The enemy planned a nighttime assault on the city. They carefully wrapped their weapons in rags  so they would not accidentally scrape a sword on a rock. They put camouflage paint on their faces so they would not be seen in the dark. Their plan was to sneak up and to place their ladders against the city walls. Quietly, they would climb up and silently overwhelm the soldiers. By the time the inhabitants of the city woke up, they would already be enslaved.

On top of the city wall there was a watchman. His job was to keep an eye out for the enemy. But it was a boring job. Never in his life had anyone attacked. He was tempted to fall asleep. It was the middle of the night. It was cold. Surely it would not matter if he closed his eyes for a short time.

In his mind, he struggled with competing thoughts about his duty versus his comfort. It would be so nice to rest. But, his job was to keep an eye out for the enemy. He decided to take one last walk along the wall before taking a nap.

He stared out into the darkness. Clouds covered the stars. But, then a small breeze briefly blew a hole in the clouds and for a moment light shined through. The watchman saw a brief gleam, a small flash. It attracted his attention. He squinted into the darkness. He saw hundreds of humps scurrying on the ground towards the wall. What was that? As one hump came closer, he spotted the tip of a helmet and a long spear. It was the enemy.

The watchman ran as fast as he could to the bell in his guard shack. He grabbed the cord and begin to pull with all his might. The loud bell rang out into the night. The enemy, realizing that surprise had been lost, shouted and began to sprint towards the walls. Inside, the city’s defenders woke from their stupor and struggled to put on their armor. The first to arrive at the top of the wall were there just in time to push the ladders away from the walls. A furious battle raged.

By dawn, the battle had been won. The enemy slinked away like a dog dragging his tail on the ground. The watchman was celebrated and treated like a hero. He had saved the city from destruction!

When we pray, we serve as watchmen for our nation, our culture, our people. The enemy is always trying to attack, but the vigilant prayers of a faithful believer will keep the enemy at bay.