Bob Perry has been praying intensively for over forty years. He explained that, in the past, when an intercessor had a burden to pray, they would carry the burden forever. Which meant that they were grumpy people much of the time, because the world always seemed really heavy and not very good.
Sounds like they would do well to consider the quote by Sharon Creech: “You can’t keep the birds of sadness from flying over your head, but you can keep them from nesting in your hair.”
At Workplace Prayer, we train our intercessors—or, as we call them, advocates—to be effective and healthy.
After all, Jesus said, “My yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
So if we try to carry something that’s too heavy, that’s actually not okay.
We train our advocates to enter in to what God has for them.
For example, using myself as an example, I will sometimes have groans come out of me, like I’m in labor. Or I might burst into tears.
Both of these responses are typical for me, and neither lasts very long. I might have a crying jag for five minutes, and then it passes. I go from being totally normal, to being absolutely wrecked, to being totally normal.
But sometimes the sense doesn’t pass quickly.
Sometimes I get to the place where I say, “Jesus, this one is too heavy for me to carry. I’m going to give this to you because your shoulders are stronger than mine. And since the scripture says, ‘Surely he has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows,’ this is actually your job, so I’m handing my sorrow to you.”
Then, in my mind, I hand the burden to Jesus.
However odd this sounds … it works.
One of the people who taught and discipled Bob was Rosemarie Claussen, who was discipled by Corrie ten Boom.
Rosemary said, “Every night, give to Jesus every person you’ve interacted with. Otherwise you keep carrying them, and that is too much.”
At Workplace Prayer, we love to pray for you. But we don’t carry you until we are fatigued. Jesus is stronger.
So for you: are you carrying more than you ought?
Do you carry your clients after they leave?
Do you take your work home at night?
Why don’t you try this experiment? After every appointment, every call, every sale, say, “Jesus, thank you that I had the privilege to share part of their burden. Thank you that you share your heart with me. But I am not strong enough to carry this still. So I’m giving it back to you.” It’s a joy to try prayer experiments!