I ask that we all pray this prayer to be enlightened by the Holy Spirit so that His Divine will be done and not our own.
Prayer When They Slander You
April 1, 1998
When I seemed to be getting nowhere in [one spiritual] battle, I finally cried out in desperation, "Lord, what and how am I to pray for my enemies? Those beloved ones who slander me and the work you've given me to do?"
Several days later, as I was praying, [God gave me a blueprint for prayer in this situation.] It contains sound principles that everybody seems to need once the battle is joined:
1. Pray that the eyes of all who surround these persons be opened to see the situation as it really is.
2. Pray that their associates will be given ways to speak truth and light into the situation.
In these first two steps, we are praying for godly illumination and wisdom for the persons who can minister truth and peace into the situation, while at the same time we are praying for their safety We are asking that these stable people be spared from getting caught up in the dark net of spiritual confusion and deception—a very present danger in spiritual warfare—and that they be enabled to aid others who are ensnared.
As I meditated on these first two ways of prayer, the Lord greatly ministered the story of David and Goliath to me, this truth from 1 Samuel 17:47 in particular: "… it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord's."
I then asked, "Jesus, what is the smooth stone, slung at your command, that will stop the Goliaths of envy, slander, murderous hate—all that is the enemy of your cross, your message?"
And immediately I heard in my spirit, "Truth, truth will out—it will hit the mark."
Then the following instruction is what caused us to name this way of interceding the "paint-the-dragon-red" prayer:
3. Pray that any demonic power within these persons or within these situations manifest itself— that it may be clearly discerned and seen by all the people.
C. S. Lewis has rightly said that "Love is something more stern and splendid than mere kindness." This is terribly hard on the "beloved enemy," but it is the only way he will be healed. In answer to this prayer, God causes the real enemy of all our souls to be revealed for all to see.
There will, of course, always be some unwilling to see and repent. They blind themselves by continuing to rationalize their sin.
When this happens, we invoke and practice the Presence of God and find that, "Wherever Jesus is, the storms of life become a calm." We find also that he is doing a work within ourselves that could never have been done apart from the disciplines learned through sustained spiritual warfare.
After this third point, the Lord quickened 1 Samuel 14:15 to me. I saw that Jonathan and his armor-bearer, only two men, put the entire Philistine army to flight as they fought for God's people. They stepped out in faith, speaking the word of truth, and the Lord worked with them: "Then panic struck the whole army … and the ground shook. It was a panic sent by God."
There is an illusory nature to evil. It attempts to win through bluff—through puffing itself up to horrendous size. One word of truth, spoken in the power of the Holy Spirit, solid as a rock and splendid as eternity, flies swift as the surest arrow to puncture evil's swelled balloon of lies, posturing, and bravado.
The fourth step the Lord gave in this "paint-the-dragon-red" prayer is ever so important. It underlines the fact that our battle is against sin and not against the sinner:
Ask that what can be salvaged in this situation and in the live of your opponents be saved, humbled, blessed by the Spirit of God.
With this, I wrote out these instructions from the Lord:
Pray for the health, the wholeness, of your enemies. Pray for the salvaging of all that is good, beautiful, and true within them. I do a great work, one that will amaze you. Be at rest now from all that besets, offends, attacks—love, write, pray, live in peace in my Presence. Enter the timelessness of my joy and peace.