Prayer: The Great Romance
Since the focus of God’s heart from the beginning of time has been preparing a Bride for His Son, He has always desired an intimate relationship with His people. And so He has spoken to us in various ways, with the consistent goal of engaging us in a dialogue about life in relationship with Him. This dialogue is called prayer, and its primary purpose is that we might come to know the heart of the One Who loves us and understands who we are and what we will become.
He alone knows my true identity, and His words empower me to live in that identity. What could be more helpful, more healing than listening to Him? What could be more beneficial than speaking with Him in loving dialogue? Out of His heart of love, He draws us to the place of prayer, that He might communicate His intentions.
As we listen, the Spirit of God works within our hearts and convinces us that God loves us and that we are indeed His children, called according to His purposes.[i] He speaks to us about His plans for us, just as He spoke to Jeremiah in the Old Testament:
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.
He knows the plans He has for us and He’s in the mood to talk about them! God is a communicator. He has romance on His mind, He is preparing us for an eternal relationship of joy and gladness with His Son Jesus Christ and He longs to speak with us about it.
As He speaks and we listen, we come to agree with His agenda for ourselves and for the rest of the human race. Because God is a lover, His strategy is not simply to invade the earth with overwhelming power and authority, but to woo and win a Bride through gentle persuasion. He wants voluntary lovers who become convinced of His honorable intentions. From that place of confidence, we become partners in accomplishing His purposes, first in personal matters, then in the redemption of all mankind and the restoration of the created order, and finally in a place of shared rulership for eternity over His ever-increasing Kingdom[ii].
This partnership is realized through intercessory prayer. We begin to say back to God that we agree with His agenda and His strategies, not only for ourselves and the things that concern us, but for every situation outside ourselves for which He gives us the strength to pray. In doing so, we stand alongside the Man Christ Jesus before God as heirs of His Kingdom. As we begin to agree with Him, He begins to release more and more of His influence, until at the end of the age all things are conformed to His pleasure and will. Those who have come into agreement with His assessment of reality will stand together with His Son Jesus Christ, the Lord of all that is, as His royal Bride and ruling partner.
[i]See Romans 8:15-17;28-30.
[ii]See Isaiah 9:7; also Romans 8:17; 2 Timothy 2:12; Revelation 1:6; 5:10; 20:4.