1 Chronicles 12:32 refers to the sons of Issachar as being a company of men who understood the times and seasons of God. The ability to perceive when one move of God was ending and the next move was beginning, gave them influence within the nation of Israel to such a degree that the nation wouldn’t move, except upon the counsel of these men. This tells us, they sought God, not for themselves, but instead for their nation.
Discerning the times and seasons of God, and communicating that message, is one of the most important ministries of the church for the hour we are living in. Romans 8:19 tells us that creation earnestly waits for the revealing of the sons of God. But, as we see from the life of David and many others, every public revealing is preceded by a season of private concealing. There is no more significant incubator for concealing and preparing man, than the secret place of prayer.
Prayer is the avenue by which the heart of God is transplanted into the hearts of men. It shifts our focus from where we’ve been in the last season to where He wants to move us in the next season. It is the place of exchange where we lay down our message so that we come away with His. For so long our request has been, ‘God use us.’ But for the one who remains hidden in the secret place long enough, that prayer turns to: ‘God, just give me your heart.’ It is possible to be used by the hand of God without carrying His heart. However, it is impossible to have His heart, without being used by His hand.
Time in the place of prayer prepares us to be ‘sent’; and as we go, the authority by which we speak comes more from the relationship than revelation. Heaven is waiting for the global church to unite and prostrate itself in humble prayer and seek God’s face for the message we are to speak to the world for this time and season.
We must return to the place of fervent prayer, where we ask God not only for an understanding of the times and seasons but also for heaven’s strategies to be given us to move our nation is the way it should go.
– Donald Gibson