By Ronnie Floyd
Prayer always precedes the next great movement of God in our lives, in our churches, and in our nation. There is no great movement of God that has ever occurred that does not begin with the extraordinary prayer of God’s people.
Prayer Is a Process
This past July, Jeana and I went to Israel, the Holy Land. When we take groups to Israel and reach the Garden of Gethsemane, we always give people the opportunity to give us their names and some need for us to call out before God as we pray in that place that is so meaningful to believers.
During this recent Garden experience, in rapid fire before the Lord, we were faithful to pray in this way for a few hundred people who deeply desired God’s intervention due to crisis or need. When we finished this hour in the Garden, I told Jeana I was absolutely exhausted. Even though it was not yet midmorning, the process of prayer exhausted me.
Why? Prayer is difficult, especially when carrying the burdens of so many. Jeana said I was exhausted because I “preached my praying” that day with such great intensity.
My point is this: Prayer is a process. Prayer is hard work. Prayer requires discipline and focus. Prayer requires our best before the Father in heaven. In fact, why would we not want to give God our best?
Prayer Leads to Results
When the process of prayer is observed, we expect to see God provide some amazing results. I look with anticipation for results like these:
1. A great movement of God will begin. When I pray, I start looking for a great movement of God to occur in me, around me, or even through me. I do not look for this great movement in feelings but in concrete things we can point out to others, showing that God is obviously at work.
I believe one day soon in America, the next great move of God will occur. Yes, it could begin somewhere familiar to all of us, or, as some believe, perhaps a remote part of our country. If God truly shows up in a manner that unmistakably manifests His involvement, we will not care where it happens because the focus will not be on where—but on Him. Jesus is showing up! Therefore, with hopeful expectation, I am looking for this to happen one day soon! Why? There are so many people praying, and when people pray, God moves among people demonstrably.
2. Churches will experience spiritual revival. This will become very exciting. Jesus loves His Church, and when our local churches begin to respond to Him by praying and calling out to Him for help, He will step forward in great power and might! It will be a God-sized and life-changing time.
Pastors will preach with such spiritual power from on High that people in many local churches will begin wondering what happened to their pastor! Students and young adults will begin to emerge in and through their churches, responding to God’s Spirit and stepping forward to lead these movements of the Spirit.
Churches will begin to grow. And when a church wakes up, the community will know it! When a church is on fire for God, the community will at least come and watch us burn. We cannot minimize what the Church can do when it is ignited by the power of the Spirit of God.
3. The gospel will advance. We should not forget this promise. In eternity, there will be redeemed people who are “from every nation, tribe, people and language” (Rev. 7:9), giving praise to God eternally.
Before Jesus comes again, I believe there will be a powerful gospel explosion that will result in people across the entire world responding positively to the gospel. When we pray, we begin to live and lead in a way that expects the next great move of God, expects churches to experience spiritual revival, and expects gospel advancement to happen.
Prayer always precedes great movements of God, including the next great movement of God in our lives, our churches, and across our nation and world. Therefore, keep on praying and believing, but do so with great expectation!
Now is the time to lead.
DR. RONNIE FLOYD is the president of the National Day of Prayer and senior pastor of Cross Church in Northwest Arkansas.