Some  time ago, I received a letter from one of our  members who was concerned over the implications of the Agnes Sanford item on  minstering to the sick. She felt that intercession by  those not present was not given its place in the article. The  article that follows is a digest of material furnished me by Mrs  Stanley Kammerer of South Kingstown, RI to present the other side of  the story.

Does  intercessory prayer transcend the  time/space  limitations  we know as humans? Can there be any other  response  than "Yes  indeed"? Laying on hands may seem to be superior to  long-distance  intercession; but is it not possible that this  depends neither  on the one ministering or on the reeiver. It  is  God's sovereign  choice to use the tools that He selects and  we  offer for His use.

If we are one in Christ and Christ is with each disciple, we are  certainly at one with each other. The spirit of the  person for whom prayer is offered needs only accessibility to the  prayer  and  to the prayer that opens the way for the Lord  to  move. "Lord I believe. Help Thou my unbelief."

Consider  too  the  viability of our  own  OSL  Intercessory Prayer  Line. It is always accessible so that we can  know  with reasonable certainty that people all over the country are  joined in  prayer to supply our prayer needs. The prayer opens the  way for God's power to flow, even though the intercessors are not  by our side.

There are certainly illustrations from the ministry of Jesus when He did not go to the sick to pray, but prayed from a distant place. The daughter of the Syro-Phonecian woman, the centurion's servant,  and the son of the nobleman who approached him in  Cana were all granted healing to those for whom they interceded  even though they were not in Jesus' presence.

Perhaps the key to our understanding is not so much that  we are there or away at a distance, but that we are obedient to  the One  who calls us to pray and faithful to the one in need of  the prayer.  Where the way is beyond our reach because time  is  too short  or  distance is too long, God spans the  moments  and  the miles with a love that knows no limits.

Alfred  Lord Tennyson's "Morte d'Arthur" has Arthur  saying, "Pray  for my soul. More things are wrought by prayer than  this world  dreams of. Therefore, let thy voice rise like an  incense for me day and night." Is it not the soul that needs the  prayer as well as the body's pains? "For what are men better than sheep or goats that nourish a blind life in the brain. If, knowing God they lift not hands in prayer, both for themselves and those  who call  them  friend? For so the whole round earth is every way bound by chains of gold about the feet of God."

We are indeed bound by chains of gold about the feet of  God in  our times of intercessory prayer. Those chains of  gold  are the delicate threads that set our intercesions free from time and space  to become the celestial wireless that opens our  world  to become the Kingdom of our God. Therein lies our participation in God's healing ministry across the miles and moments that seem to separate us from those we love.

Milton  wrote in Paradise Lost, "The mind is its own  place, and  in itself can make a heaven of hell, or a hell of  heaven." It  depends upon our will to seek and serve the King  -  offering our own prayers as a channel of His grace and love to others, and to ourselves.

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