I have had a lot of prayer requests lately asking what to do about people who make everything about them. If you are praying for others they have it worse. If you are interceding for something they want the prayers for themselves. These people are a lot of work and they make other people uncomfortable. We don't wrestle against flesh and blood and as cliché as it sounds, some people cannot get the attention they think they need unless it is negatively.
One of the devil's main tricks is to cause you to miss the goodness of God. He did this in the garden with Eve. Satan wants you to question the value of all the things you think you do not have. In Eve's case she was supposed to leave one tree alone. How many did she have? Did she focus on those? No, she focused on the one she could not have. That is how she was deceived.
In a lot of families the child who causes the most problems gets all the attention, all the gifts, everything good. The good kids get ignored. Most responsibility is put on them. Most shortcomings are blamed on them. The equality of parental treatment goes out the door. When watching this situation once I asked the parent about it and they said that the "good kid" did not need anything the other one did. The good kid could handle anything the other one could not. I was speechless. Have we regressed to a society that rewards bad behavior? Think Sodom and Gomorrah.
One method the enemy uses is to get you to complain about what you don't have so you will lose sight of what God has given you. God tells you to do the opposite:
Philippians 4:6-8 (NIV)
Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
We need to start praising him and thanking Him for all He has provided. He wants us to begin by giving thanks for all he has done and His goodness—not only in our own lives but in the world around us.
He also warns of consequences:
Malachi 3: 13-18
“You have spoken arrogantly against me,” says the Lord.
“Yet you ask, ‘What have we said against you?’
“You have said, ‘It is futile to serve God. What do we gain by carrying out his requirements and going about like mourners before the Lord Almighty? But now we call the arrogant blessed. Certainly evildoers prosper, and even when they put God to the test, they get away with it.’”
Then those who feared the Lord talked with each other, and the Lord listened and heard. A scroll of remembrance was written in his presence concerning those who feared the Lord and honored his name.
“On the day when I act,” says the Lord Almighty, “they will be my treasured possession. I will spare them, just as a father has compassion and spares his son who serves him. And you will again see the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between those who serve God and those who do not.
I bought a huge sign one time that said "No whining". I think it is time to implement that in the church so we can get to the position we can be used by Christ instead of avoided by the world and Christians alike. We should be a sign of hope to the world. We should be the light of Christ in a dark world.
What does this have to do with intercession?
The body of Christ needs to go back to a heart of praise and gratitude. We need to appreciate what the Lord has done and is doing. Time to change our thinking.
Time to pray.