Praying 'Over Your Head'
By: Rhonda Mead
All of the disciplines for intimacy with our Lord that we have learned and practiced since new birth have prepared us for this point in history. When we were born again, we were placed “in Christ” and Our Father “seated us with Him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:6). This is commonly called a ‘positional truth,’ which means that it is true in the spirit realm, but is not yet our personal experience. As Christ becomes the head of each member of His Bride, they are being “caught up” with the Lord to rule with Him in “heavenly places.” This is a present reality and we are currently moving from ‘positional truth’ to personal experience or ‘experiential truth.’
The Lord is calling us to share in His reign, which is beyond our understanding, in order to rule with Him. Since His ways are higher than our ways, we must walk in unquestioning obedience and complete dependence upon His direction. This step of growth brings us to complete union with Christ.
Unwavering obedience and absolute dependence on the Lord will be necessary for us to be used in the accomplishment of His purposes in the earth. At times, we may not be able to understand why He is doing what He is doing or how He will be able to do it, but it is imperative that we “do not lean on” our “own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5).
Our personal expression of Our Father on this earth will be limited if we insist on understanding what He is doing before we obey. A compilation of phrases from the 1864 poem, “The Charge of the Light Brigade,” by Alfred Lord Tennyson, gives insight to this principle:
“Ours is not to reason why
Ours is but to do and die
Into the jaws of death,
Into the gates of hell
Rode the six hundred.”
As members of the Lord’s ‘overcoming army,’ this must be our battle cry. It is not our place to reason why, instead we must die to our right to understand. As our Lord sends us into battle against the gates (or authority) of Hell, we will overcome by not loving our lives even in the face of death (Revelation 12:11). Just as Jesus stated He only did what He saw the Father doing and only said what He heard His Father saying, we must bring our reliance on and our communication with our Father to a new level through what I call, ‘listening prayer.’
"For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways," declares the LORD. For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways And My thoughts than your thoughts. … So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; It will not return to Me empty, Without accomplishing what I desire, And without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it.” —Isaiah 55:8,9,11
We have an especially hard time comprehending exactly how much higher God’s ways are than ours. Part of our problem is that we do not have an accurate concept of how really limited we are compared to Him. Two analogies I often use may be of help. One time the Lord told me that I am like an ant and He—in comparison—is a whirlwind. Another teacher has compared us to three-year-olds, in contrast to the One Who effortlessly holds the universe together. We need to keep these two pictures in mind as we take up residency in the heavenly places and rule with Christ as part of His multi-membered body.
As we see from Isaiah, it is the word of the Lord that does not return “empty” or ‘without cause’—in contrast to the words proceeding from our own understanding of the situation. If it has not been your practice, it is time to begin waiting upon the Lord—not only singularly but also in group prayer sessions—until His will and words come forth.
If we pray according to our understanding—apart from divine revelation—we could be limiting our usefulness to that of the ant. As we mature in the Lord, we have an increased knowledge of His ways. However, at this time in history—by ourselves—we still only know in part and see in part (I Corinthians 13:12).
As we speak the words the Lord gives us and do what we see the Father doing, we shall release words with ‘cause and effect,’ and a force from our obedient actions that will gradually transform the heavens and the earth.
Our Father is so far beyond our understanding that one word from His heart can put into force multiple results across time and space. Even when we have a strong impression of what God is doing from our prayer, we can’t possibly know the extent of our words and actions. God is calling us to call forth the miraculous, speak what to us may seem ridiculous, and to declare beyond our understanding. God is saying if we want to see results that are “…far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think…” (Ephesians 3:20), or to release that “…WHICH EYE HAS NOT SEEN AND EAR HAS NOT HEARD, AND which HAVE NOT ENTERED THE HEART OF MAN…” we must not ‘reason why.’ God wants ‘room to move’ and we certainly don’t want to limit Him to the understanding of the ant.
How exciting and amazing it is, that in this ‘Day’ we have been given the awesome opportunity to share in releasing the will of the Lord in the earth. For this opportunity to become our personal experience, however, we must change our concept of prayer. We must practice ‘listening prayer’ as a way of life. As we release His words and follow what we see Him doing, we will be empowered to ‘pray over our heads.’ Our obedience will ‘cause’ God’s higher thoughts and ways to be released on the earth as never before!
*all scripture taken from the NASB unless otherwise noted