Few believers would not admit that our nation is in trouble. We are spiraling downward morally at a breath-taking rate. And most believers would say the Church in America is also in trouble. Fewer and fewer are strongly proclaiming the gospel of Jesus. People who call themselves Christian are not living with any view of God’s holiness guiding their lives.
There were other times in the history of the United States where things were just as bad morally, politically, socially, and economically. But in each of those times, the Church and believers began to pray and the results were three great revivals and spiritual awakenings. (Read “America’s Pentecost” by Robert Bakke from the premier issue of Prayer Connect.)
In a recent address where he announced the new theme for the 2018 National Day of Prayer, NDOP President, Dr. Ronnie Floyd, said we need to call people and churches to extraordinary prayer for such a time as this. I bet as local church prayer leaders your heart leapt within you as you resonated with that statement. But perhaps almost as quick you became discouraged as you thought, I can’t get more than 3 or 5 out to a prayer meeting at my church. How in the world will I move my church into extraordinary prayer?
Take heart. Because obtaining a level of extraordinary prayer is not as tough as you think! Dr. Floyd went on to define extraordinary prayer. “Extraordinary prayer,” he said, “is prayer that is beyond what you are doing now.” How simple is that?
Pastors and prayer leaders, as we move into 2018, I want to challenge you to consider how you can move your people and church into extraordinary prayer—prayer that is beyond what you are doing now.
Maybe that means doing a prayer initiative for 30 days when you weren’t thinking of doing one this year. Maybe it is working with your pastor and elders to have a 3-minute prayer time for our nation once a month in the morning worship service. Maybe it is rethinking or tweaking the focus of your weekly or monthly prayer meeting. Maybe it is searching for prayer guides to put in the hands of your people that could move them from their ordinary prayer life into extraordinary.
Doing anything additional will help move your people into extraordinary prayer!
I also highly recommend that you take a few minutes and ready through the National Prayer Accord. This rhythm of prayer has been adopted by more than 100 ministries, hundreds of thousands of believers and thousands of churches across the nation who are praying for revival and spiritual awakening. Your move to extraordinary prayer may just come from the Holy Spirit speaking to you as you read through and think through this accord.
–Jonathan Graf is the president of the Church Prayer Leaders Network and a popular speaker in churches on the subject of prayer. He is also the author or compiling editor of 7 books including Restored Power: Becoming a Praying Church One Tweak at a Time.