Christ Community Church of Brazil, IN, a congregation of 150, has discovered a way to encourage a strong core of its men to pray for the church.
At a men’s breakfast last year, Pastor Rich Laskowski spoke on the importance of men actively participating in prayer. He then asked the men to commit to doing something unique every Sunday morning, five minutes before the worship service. Now it has become a regular practice.
Each Sunday morning just before the service begins, several men walk to the front of the sanctuary and raise both hands. This signals a call to all the men present. Immediately a larger group of men responds by coming forward, getting into groups of four or five, and praying for the morning service.
They pray for the power of the Holy Spirit, for the Lord’s presence to be evident, for an anointing on the worship and spoken Word, and for the kids’ ministry going on at the same time as the service. All the prayers focus on what takes place that morning. This is not a time to pray for personal needs, the community, or other agenda items.
At the breakfast last year, Pastor Rich gave the men a laminated card with a written prayer to help them get started. No one uses the card now because everyone has become comfortable praying without it.
Each week, this congregation watches as 10 to 15 men storm the gates of heaven in united prayer at the front of the church. The prayer time has been so successful that the groups now start forming about ten minutes ahead of the service, instead of five, to allow more time to pray.
To start a similar practice in your church, plan a special event when your pastor and leadership can explain the men’s role in prayer for your church, provide prayer points as an example of how to pray, and challenge the men to step up. Many men will rise to the occasion if they are given a specific prayer agenda and a plea from your pastor for men to take ownership.