Recently as I was praying, a mental picture came to my mind. The thought of the days of the “draft” when our nation was going to war came to mind. Men of a certain age bracket were “drafted.” Or you simply enlisted.
These men were young adults. Men at their prime. Strong. Resilient. Capable. Men not plagued with physical infirmity. Only the strongest to withstand the atrocities of war. Once enlisted, they went through rigorous training regimens to make them strong, capable, resilient men ready for war. Strong in body, trained into submission, and ready to respond to commands.
Do you know what I was “seeing in my Spirit? Men and women “of much age” being drafted! The gray-haired! Oh, for many women, it’s covered over, but it’s there! As we mentally peruse the battalion, we see gray-haired men and women. We see men who are bald. Some in His unit walk with “a hitch in their step.” There are others who use walking aids, such as canes and even walkers! Oh, most would look at this motley crew and say, “Well, if that isn’t the perfect picture of a group who is totally past their prime!”
But the Lord is assembling just such an army. You see, it’s in our Father’s very nature to use the “weak” to shame the wise. When people say “cannot,” the Lord says, “Oh, yes I can!” He loves to turn weakness into strength. It simply magnifies His glory.
So, the world says, “Gather the young! Gather the fittest of the fit! Gather those with no physical disabilities and we will prepare them for war!”
And I imagine God saying, “Gather my seasoned warriors! Gather my faithful, who throughout their years have held fast to My word as their treasure! Who have experienced the darkest of trials and come through in worship to Me. Gather my faithful students, who have steadfastly stayed in my classroom, being taught by my Holy Spirit. Gather the prayer warriors, those who have learned I hear, I see, I answer as they call. Gather the ones who have learned to trust me, who have learned to wait for me. The ones who continue to long for me. Gather those who see heaven as their prize, and the world and its sinful lure as their enemy. It’s time to gather my seasoned warriors! For I have been preparing a unit perfectly seasoned and trained to obey, to respond to my voice.”
The battle is spiritual, therefore our strength is spiritual, rather than physical! What a powerful army He’s amassing!
The devil spews his putrid lies:
“You’re all washed up!”
“You’re too old to be of any benefit to the body of Christ!”
“Who wants to listen to you? You’re too old. You know people want those who are younger. Just give it up.”
“You have nothing to offer.”
Oh, but God’s idea is SOOO different than these lies.
Ps. 92: 14-15: 14 Even in old age they will still produce fruit; they will remain vital and green. 15 They will declare, “The LORD is just! He is my rock! There is no evil in him!”
I Cor. 1:26-29: 26 Remember, dear brothers and sisters, that few of you were wise in the world’s eyes or powerful or wealthy when God called you. 27 Instead, God chose things the world considers foolish in order to shame those who think they are wise. And he chose things that are powerless to shame those who are powerful. 28 God chose things despised by the world, things counted as nothing at all, and used them to bring to nothing what the world considers important. 29 As a result, no one can ever boast in the presence of God.
Zech. 4:6: 6 Then he said to me, “This is what the LORD says to Zerubbabel: It is not by force nor by strength, but by my Spirit, says the LORD of Heaven’s Armies.
I Cor. 12:9-10: … “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me. 10 That’s why I take pleasure in my weaknesses, and in the insults, hardships, persecutions, and troubles that I suffer for Christ. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
Ps. 73:26: 26 My health may fail, and my spirit may grow weak, but God remains the strength of my heart; he is mine forever.
Is. 40:26-31: 26 Look up into the heavens. Who created all the stars? He brings them out like an army, one after another, calling each by its name. Because of his great power and incomparable strength, not a single one is missing. 27 O Jacob, how can you say the LORD does not see your troubles? O Israel, how can you say God ignores your rights? 28 Have you never heard? Have you never understood? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth. He never grows weak or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding. 29 He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless. 30 Even youths will become weak and tired, and young men will fall in exhaustion. 31 But those who trust in the LORD will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.
Rom. 8:26-28: 26 And the Holy Spirit helps us in our weakness. For example, we don’t know what God wants us to pray for. But the Holy Spirit prays for us with groanings that cannot be expressed in words. 27 And the Father who knows all hearts knows what the Spirit is saying, for the Spirit pleads for us believers in harmony with God’s own will. 28 And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.
Phil. 4:13: 13 For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength.
Matt. 26:41: 41 Keep watch and pray, so that you will not give in to temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the body is weak!”
There is an army of older people arising to heed the call of God to gather together for spiritual warfare. A group who resist the lies spewed by our enemy and intended to silence the older among us and their cries toward heaven! An amassing army who realize strength is not measured in our physical body, rather in our spirit. And as we have yielded to Him, learned from Him, been trained by Him for years and years, He has been faithfully preparing us for such a time as this!
An army strong in spirit, resilient, capable. An army truly “in their prime!” What to the world looks weak is nothing short of God’s strength having been trained into His children over many hard and trying years. And He will reveal His glory in the earth through a “gray-haired army.” Some with a hitch in their step, others assisted by canes and walkers, yet with voices that refuse to be silenced. An army of well-worn workers who understand they are still producing fruit; they are still vital and green.
Hallelujah, an army that is flourishing in the courts of our God!
Let me end with what could become an anthem of the “elderly army” amassed for war:
1 When the LORD brought back his exiles to Jerusalem, it was like a dream! 2 We were filled with laughter, and we sang for joy. And the other nations said, “What amazing things the LORD has done for them.” 3 Yes, the LORD has done amazing things for us! What joy! 4 Restore our fortunes, LORD, as streams renew the desert. 5 Those who plant in tears will harvest with shouts of joy. 6 They weep as they go to plant their seed, but they sing as they return with the harvest.
When we think of restoring fortunes, it takes time to amass a fortune. Our grown children are our fortunes! And the grayhaired are crying out for Him to restore our fortunes! No, we will not retire spiritually! We will not become silent! We are among so many we don’t even know of who are also responding to the call of the Holy Spirit to arise. Be not content-rather, pray! Stand in the gap! Trust God!
OUR CRY? RESTORE OUR FORTUNES, LORD, AS STREAMS RENEW THE DESERT!!!
Oh, it may be the “hour of tears” for a season as we sow intercession “into the gap,” however, the harvest SHALL appear and we will shout with joy! We may be called to tarry in the fields of intercession, AND TARRY WE WILL!
BUT!! WE WILL RETURN WITH THE HARVEST!
Praise God for His seasoned, trained, ready warriors who say I will labor and tarry! Just remember, the seasons change, and one day we will RETURN WITH OUR FORTUNES!
Written by Tami Hulse