By Pastor Bob Myers
Prayer is a way of declaring that we are desperate for God. All the doing in the world does not replace prayer. And all the praying in the world does not replace doing. They work together hand-in-hand. But most of us are more comfortable with doing than being. We are drawn to activity. We struggle more with praying.
The new building is a tremendous tool to help us advance that desire in how we embody ministry. We want to give everyone in Doylestown the opportunity to hear and respond in faith to the Gospel. But prayer is a means God has given to soften hearts, to create a new interest that arises from God giving a willingness, an openness, or a curiosity. Prayer also opens us to be reshaped. Prayer helps us stay open to being used and to living with more wisdom and boldness. Prayer conditions our hearts and allows us to convey the presence of God.
I was mentored by a leader who always prayed with me before making a pastoral visit so that we would bring with us a sense of the presence of God. I have found that practice to make a powerful difference in how I am received.
A famous evangelist put it this way, “Evangelism is an explosive, but it needs a detonator—which is prayer. Prayer is a detonator, but it needs an explosive—which is evangelism. Evangelism and intercession are the two feet on which the gospel strides the world”.
So, in all of our ministries, we need work and we need prayer. “When we pray, coincidences happen”. Prayer is a means that supercharges everything else that we do. Prayer helps us pay attention to God. When we are prayed into fullness, the conversations, the little asides, the dynamic that is intangible reverberates with God’s presence.
There’s lots of praying going on at Covenant in our small groups and ministries, but I want to encourage us in the month of October to amplify the praying and encourage grass roots initiatives in prayer as we prepare for the Grand Opening of our new facilities on October 26-27th.
Here’s some ways to be more intentional about praying:
1. Get on your knees or do something with your posture to help you focus. Even securing a place where you will not be distracted is helpful. Jesus mentioned a closet in Matthew 6!
2. Focus some time on prayer in your small group. Pray for Covenant’s praying and pray for our church to be vibrant with the life that only Christ can impart to us.
3. Initiate some “flash-mob” prayer times. You can text people to pray, but you can also just tap a few people on the shoulder and join in a spontaneous prayer huddle.
4. Set your phone alarm to a time each day or times to pray.
5. Stay alert for some upcoming times to pray together. Some of them will be announced as we seek help in moving chairs and getting ready for move-in day. We want to make these times of work also a time of praying together.
We stand on the threshold of an exciting new ministry era for Covenant Church. Let’s enter it with more praying, more expectation, and more dependence upon God!
Christ’s willingness to embrace the Cross for us was manifested after spending the night in prayer. The disciples fell away in part because they did not watch and pray.
Only human beings can pray. We are unique in this respect. Angels worship, but we never hear of angels praying. Prayer is the most wonder-filled gift of the grace of God and our highest natural capacity. We never rise higher than when we are on our knees before God. Colossians 4:2 invites to “Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving.”
Friday, October 11th from 7:30-9am I will lead a concert of prayer in the Worship Center. Even if you’ve never prayed aloud, come join us in silent prayer. The focus on this meeting will be praying promises for spiritual renewal in us and in our community. I will have scripture verses printed on cards and each person will receive one. Come for any and all of this time that you can. And if you can’t be here, pray for our praying!