03 September 2009


3 Then another angel with a gold incense burner came and stood at the altar. And a great quantity of incense was given to him to mix with the prayers of God’s people, to be offered on the gold altar before the throne. 4 The smoke of the incense, mixed with the prayers of the saints, ascended up to God from the altar where the angel had poured them out. (Revelation 8:3-4 NLT)

In John’s vision, he saw an angel mixing incense with the prayers of God’s people and then pouring the mixture of prayer and incense on a gold altar so that the sweet-smelling smoke of the mixed incense and prayers ascended up to God.

When I pray, it’s more than merely asking for things I need. It’s more than seeking direction and receiving instruction. It’s more than rituals I perform before meals and in church services. It’s more than a spiritual discipline. It’s much more than I commonly recognize it to be. My prayers are pleasing to God and he not only hears them, he receives them with pleasure.

When we pray, our prayers get mixed in with activity in the unseen spiritual realm that includes powerful angels doing God’s will. Our prayers, “the prayers of God’s people,” don’t just dissipate into the air around us. Prayer can be delight or prayer can be discipline or prayer can be desperation, but prayer actually gets to God. It’s worth it to pray!

David had an understanding of this truth as he wrote “Accept my prayer as incense offered to you, and my upraised hands as an evening offering.” (Psalm 141:2 NLT)


Father, you are Lord of Lords, King of Kings, Almighty God, Everlasting Father. This morning I add my meditations, my thoughts, and my prayers to the prayers of all God’s people to be mixed with the incense poured on the golden altar before your throne. I hope you are pleased with the mix today. Amen.

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