Our Lord Jesus Christ was the One who established the ministry of the watchman, for the Body of Christ as we do have it today. He did this when He called on the three closest of the Apostles to Him (Peter, James and John); to be watching and praying with Him in the garden of Gethsemane, just before His crucifixion:
“Then He said to them, “My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even to death. Stay here and watch with Me.””
Matthew 26:38 NKJV
At the moment of His life on the earth when Jesus experienced sorrow, He never called on the multitude to be with Him. He revealed the human nature in us here, when we are sorrowful.
The moment of sorrow is the moment when we need those who can be trusted with us. Jesus counted on His closest friends to watch with Him at that moment. All He needed them to be doing with Him was to be watching and praying, while they were expecting the arrival of His traitor (Judas Iscariot).
It’s important to note here that Jesus never told them to be watching for Him. He told them to “watch with” Him. In other words they were called to be in agreement “with Him”, about what He was going to accomplish on the cross at Calvary.
The same thing that they were called to do, is what we’re supposed to be doing also, as we are watching and waiting for Him to return.
This means that everything we are doing on the earth before His return has to be in union with Him. And we have to be abiding in Him, so as to be able to “watch with” Him (John 15:1-7).
Friends will watch with you
Jesus needed some trustworthy friends as watchmen to be standing in agreement with Him, while watching and praying about what was about to happen to Him.
He had told them a few days before this:
“You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you.”
John 15:14-15 NKJV
A friend in the time of need is a friend indeed. Jesus needed His friends to stand with Him at the time of sorrow, and not the multitude. Multitudes will always come and go away; but friends will always remain even when the going gets though.
This example by Jesus in the choice of these three, is very important for everyone in the ministry today to learn from. He was showing us how important it is for us to know and be sure, about those who are really praying with us.
Oftentimes people had told me personally that they are praying for me. And it becomes painful to hear them say it, because oftentimes they’re not aware of what to be praying about.
Friends who are closet do know what to be praying along with you about. It’s not everyone who really knows what you are in need of prayer for. And you can’t pray effectively for anyone, when you don’t know their prayer need.
As Jesus pointed out to these three closet friends of His, He needed them to be watching and praying with me, as He had forewarned them about what was going to happen to Him. And no one can be watching and praying with anyone, without knowing what to be watching and praying with them about.
Praying for others is good, but it might get directed for the wrong purposes, when we don’t know what to be watching and praying with them about. And this is the danger of having people praying for others, especially when they don’t know what they need to be watching and praying with them for.
How committed are those who are watching and praying with you, about the vision that the Lord has given to you? Do you have the Thomases or the Judases as watchmen with you? Or do you have those who you can call your friends?
Just because someone is showing up regularly for prayer meetings, doesn’t mean that person is actually in agreement with you concerning your vision. There are a lot of Thomases and Judases who will say that they are praying for you, but who are not really watching and praying along with you.
And the success of any ministry is dependent on the commitment and faithfulness, of those who are standing before the Father with the visionary about that heavenly vision.
Prayer failure is the reason why people fail
Failure in ministries and churches today is mainly due to the absence of strong prayer and focused teams, that are in agreement with the vision of the leadership.
Oftentimes the teams are praying about the things that are not really important before the Father. Do you know that financial, material or personnel needs do not cause failure in any calling of the Lord?
Christians are failing because of the lack of commitment to being watchful and prayerful before the Lord. Being watchful and prayerful before the Lord requires us to be waiting and tarrying in His presence.
Friendship with God evolves as we are watching, waiting and tarrying in His presence. The people who are your friends are the ones you are spending more time with. The same thing goes in our relationship with Jesus.
The Lord is the One who gave you the vision. He alone knows how to make it grow. But He needs you to have those who can go through the birth pang groaning with you, until the vision becomes manifested.
It’s not everyone who is showing up for your prayer meetings, that are prepared to groan and watch with you in making your vision a reality.
The reason why the Lord gave you the vision is because, He trusted you to learn everything about making it a success from His presence; instead of from the side attractions, that are affecting and impacting your vision negatively. And we can’t learn anything from the Lord, if we are not prepared to wait while watching in His presence.
The needs that you think you do have in the ministry, are not as important as your need for prayer. One word of instruction and direction from the presence of the Lord, as you are watching and waiting in His presence can transform everything else for you.
Many are failing, because they are not watching and praying before the Lord. They are more dependent on their own means of making things to work for them.
Watch and pray with your faith at work
Yet they will call it a faith work, but they are not really spending enough time in His presence, so as to receive the word of faith that they do need to make things work for them.
It’s not really everyone who says they are doing a work of faith, who are really listening to hear the word of faith for their successes from God’s presence.
The Bible says:
“So then faith comes by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.”
Romans 10:17 NKJV
God’s word for your success in the ministry comes directly from His presence to us. He never called us to be copying and adapting the vision of others into our personal callings. If He had wanted you to do that, He would had told you about it directly.
There is a unique anointing over your life that can never be found or seen on anyone else. That’s why you had received the calling that you do have from the Lord. It’s not meant to be a stereotype of what others are doing.
And if the Lord God spoke words of faith to create the heaven and earth, there is nothing preventing you from speaking words of faith also, to create everything that are needed around you in the ministry. Your faith works as you are speaking words of faith.
If speaking words of faith worked for God the Father, if it worked for Abraham and the patriarchs of faith; it will work for you also. If Jesus spoke words to heal the sick, to raise the dead and to feed the multitude; you can do it also.
He had said:
“For assuredly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be removed and be cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that those things he says will be done, he will have whatever he says. Therefore I say to you, whatever things you ask when you pray, believe that you receive them, and you will have them.”
Mark 11:23-24 NKJV
Begin to speak words of faith to your vision, as you are watching, waiting and praying. It will surely come to pass if you do not relent. God’s promises to you will surely come to pass, if you will refuse to give up.