Cities at Prayer
As prayer leaders we are often very focused on our individual church and our role of growing prayer there. So focused in fact that we sometimes are unaware of things that are happening around the nation and world with prayer.
Currently there are some wonderful God things happening with prayer movements in cities. Three powerful movements are occurring in Austin, Texas, Nashville, Tennessee, and Bellingham, Washington. But there are more cities where God is moving, too.
In Austin, more than 100 churches are involved in 24/7 prayer over the city. Churches adopt a day each month to pray for the city. Monthly multi-church prayer gatherings—sometimes attended by thousands–that focus on praying God’s blessing over Austin and its suburbs, draw believers from all over the city. Check out austinprays.org. The video shared here features two pastor-leaders, Trey Kent and Kie Bowman, announcing an upcoming prayer gathering. The short video is worth a listen to catch both the flavor of what they do and to see how people are challenge to come pray.
We are excited that PrayerShop Publishing will be publishing a book on the Austin Prays story, written by these two pastors, that both shares the story and shows how pastors in any city can develop a similar model.
Prayer Gathering from Hyde Park Baptist Church on Vimeo.
More than 400 churches in the city and suburbs of Nashville are currently in the middle of 30 days of prayer for the people of Nashville (originally written 2/20/2019). Dubbed “Awaken Nashville,” this movement has more than 40,000 believers who are each praying for 15 people—by name—then sending postcards to those people letting them know they have been prayed for!
Read more about this movement here at the website of Intercessors for America.
The “grandfather of these movements” is a prayer movement started in the Light of the World Prayer Center, which was birthed in 2008 in Bellingham, Washington, the largest city in Whatcom County. A few years after LOWPC’s founding, director Dr. Jason Hubbard and a team of pastors came up with a brilliant strategy (now used by Austin and multiple other cities) to facilitate 24/7 prayer for their city by having churches sign up to pray on one day each month. They have since taken it to multiple layers of prayer, including praying for the mountains of influence, other spiritual issues and so on.
Since they have been at it the longest, they have amazing statistics of what God is doing with salvation growth in churches, a decrease in abortion rates, and so on. You can view several videos that talk about what God has done. I encourage you to check them out at lowpc.org.
What about Your City?
God could replicate this in any city across this nation. I encourage you to pray about how God might want to use you in your city to be a catalyst for prayer. A great starting place is America Prays, which is a ministry that seeks to replicate this 24/7 prayer pattern in 40,000 cities across our nation.
–Jonathan Graf is the president of the Church Prayer Leaders Network, a ministry that seeks to equip and encourage local church prayer leaders in their role of being catalysts for prayer in their church.