If we are honest, the prayer meeting is usually one of least attended activities in church. It seems many Christians would rather do most other things in church life, than pray. And yet it sits there, firmly in the list of things the early church was most devoted to.
As I have gone through our months of pondering and seeking God for a way forward this year, I would say that our church family, Revive (and perhaps yours will be the same, but no pressure!) is awash with church services, ablaze with discipleship opportunities with training courses and we have teaching times coming out of our ears, but as we enter the new season, I feel a need to redefine ourselves under the banner that Jesus raised when He described His House:
“Then they came to Jerusalem. And He entered the temple area and began to drive out those who were selling and buying on the temple grounds, and He overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who were selling doves; and He would not allow anyone to carry merchandise through the temple grounds. And He began to teach and say to them, “Is it not written: ‘My house will be called a house of prayer for all the nations’? But you have made it a den of robbers.” Mark 11:15-17
Through this powerful and passionate moment in the short ministry of Jesus, we see His longing, His priority, His fiercely jealous purpose for us, that the House of God should be “A House of Prayer for all nations”.
So the question I ask of my church, and you should ask of yours is, Can I really describe our church primarily as a House of Prayer?
If a “secret shopper” hid among us, would they list prayer at the top of our review? Would it even make the top three? Would he or she be amazed at our ardent, passionate, unstifled LOVE for God? Would they find us fanatical about Jesus, lost in prayer, abandoned to His presence? Would they say “It was like I had strayed into the book of Acts?”
If Jesus was that secret shopper, would He turn over tables with disgusted zeal at what we have made the church, or dance with delight at the passionate worship, the continual prayer and our abandoned devotion?
AN EXTRACT FROM THE DIVINE RESET available in paperback/Kindle format: