The power of intercession

Dear coworkers,

When we think of intercession–moving God through prayer on behalf of others–the name Rees Howells may come to mind. His widely-read biography was titled simply “Intercessor.” His son Samuel, left behind by his parents as an infant so they could serve in Africa, later followed in his father’s footsteps and served as director of the Bible College of Wales for 50 years. 

One thing that Samuel Howells said has stuck with me through the years: the true intercessor must be willing for God to meet the need through himself or herself. In other words, they are laying their lives and their resources on the altar when they seek God’s help for others. (This was true of the birth of the Shevet Achim community. We had to give up what little we had in order to truly have a place of intercession for the first child who was helped.)

And it is true this weekend, as we watch the beautiful story of Reem from Gaza continue to unfold. This baby girl arrived in Israel five weeks ago. Doctors at the Sheba Medical center just barely pulled back her from death, and Reem has not been able to breathe on her own ever since. Her local leaders, Lucy and Dan in the UK, have been faithful all along in praying, telling others about Reem, and sharing scripture and song and encouragement with Reem’s young mother via social media. 

Friday Dan and five friends set out on “The Walk for Reem,” a 30-mile trek, from their church in rural Suffolk to where their river meets the sea. As a sign they carried a 4 kilogram (8.8 pound) burden, which is the weight of Reem’s tiny body:

reem walk 1

Now at the very hour that Dan and friends finished their intercessory walk, this text came in from Diana at the hospital in Israel:

reem text 1

Here’s the response from Lucy, when I texted her the news, with the comment: Dan’s intercession at work?

reem text reply

And here’s how our coworker Julio found Reem today:

reem today 2

Friends, if you’d like to know more about how the Father has given us this place of intercession for children like Reem, and you have 28 minutes, sit down with a tea and a few biscuits and you can hear the whole story in an interview I recently did with FrontPage Jerusalem called “Saving Hearts and Lives in Israel.”

And finally this week, would the spirit of God ask you to be an intercessor on behalf of one of his children? I’d like to introduce you to 13-year-old Dleza, a Yazidi refugee from the Islamic State invasion of Sinjar. She and her family live in a tent camp in Kurdistan, but Dleza reached Israel three weeks ago, where she is now awaiting heart surgery (and trying her first McFlurry):

dleza in hospital

Dleza has dropped out of school, she tires easily, gets headaches, points to her fingernails and lips, and sadly says “blue.”

The spirit of God is looking across the earth and asking “Who?” 

“Who will be an intercessor for my precious daughter?”

Until now there are no local leaders for Dleza. If you’d like to respond, please click here.

Jonathan for Shevet Achim

“Behold how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity” (Psalm 133).