Fill the bowl

Filling up the bowl.

This is a phrase I use often when it comes to praying. Sometimes I have to remind myself that my prayers are being heard and that eventually, the answer will come. In the meantime, I’m filling up the bowl and at a set time, it will be poured out.

It comes from Revelation.

“When He opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and to them were given seven trumpets. Then another angel, having a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense, that he should offer it with the prayers of all the saints upon the golden altar which was before the throne. And the smoke of the incense, with the prayers of the saints, ascended before God from the angel’s hand. Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and threw it to the earth. And there were noises, thunderings, lightnings, and an earthquake.”

Revelation 8:1-5 NKJV

This thought carried me through last year when my sister was in an extended and unexpected stay at the hospital. I knew many prayers were going up from numerous people and it gave me faith that the more that went up, the sooner her healing and recovery because the bowl was filled faster. It was a constant request in that season.

I fail to be so diligent in my own prayer life. I fail to make requests with others. I fail to bring matters before the Lord with such persistency or consistency. This was a needed reminder.

And it occurred because of a silent Sunday service at church. As I sat there experiencing this holy hush, I thought of heaven being silent for half an hour. My spirit was stirred in that pew with excitement — God was up to something BIG! Correction: God IS up to something big. Our prayers are tipping the bowl. The pour out is happening. Heaven and earth are stirring.

Our moments or seasons may be filled with silence, but the heavens are shaken. I’m finding more and more that it’s in those quiet times, those moments heavy with a hush, the seasons of silence, that God is working the most. Our hearts continually crying out in those seasons, filling up the censor, an incense before the Lord.

But how often do we remain so desperate in seasons that aren’t silent? I know for me personally, I’m not likely to push through as much when it’s “mountaintop” moments with the Lord. I ease off. But I should continually be entreating the Lord. For His promises to come to pass, for salvations, for healings, for guidance, for His presence, for His will.

This reminder to keep praying set an excitement and expectancy in me. A desire to keep seeking, asking, knocking. Where I was weary, I am now encouraged to press through. The prayers are filling up the bowl. Where I was once disheartened with time, I am now expectant for God to have perfect timing and at peace knowing He is lining it up even now. It will be poured out. Where I was once disappointed, I am now excited to see His hand having guided it along the whole time. There is a fire to the prayers that bring along a preparedness for when the time comes. Things are moving.

It’s beautiful the way He works!

So, my friends, may I encourage anyone who is weary or disappointed or discouraged to pray without ceasing — in the high or low. Your Heavenly Father is listening. It’s joining with others prayers as well and others join along with yours. What a beautiful thing to think and picture in our minds! Like smoke rising up, our prayers are lifting up. Like a bowl being filled with water, each prayer a drop. And when many voices are lifting up a certain situation, name, desire then it’s a downpour in the bowl. How exciting!

Be encouraged.

Keep asking.

Keep seeking.

Keep knocking.

The door WILL be opened to you.

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