My daughter Sarah just tried to order Draw the Circle, the 40-Day Prayer Challenge, by Mark Batterson for some friends and told me it was out of stock! What a great problem to me this signifies that the Holy Spirit is up to something. I want to thank those of you who committed to praying these last 40 days and share a few of the responses I have received via email or phone call! Be blessed as you read how a passion for prayer has multiplied, maybe even into a movement:
- A pastor friend presented the 40-Day challenge to the elders at his church to have the whole congregation participate and they said, “YES!”
- Another person just finished praying the 40 days and is now going through it a second time with 10 different guys.
- Three high school teams heading to Africa this summer consisting of over 40 students and adults will be doing the challenge to prepare for what God has for them on this mission trip.
- Another man purchased 40 books and already gave 20 away to friends and co-workers, now he is starting the 40 Days of Prayer with his extended family both in out of state.
- After hearing about others who have taken this challenge another pastor called me last week and is looking to begin praying for 40 days with their church staff.
- Several families have gathered around the dinner table to pray together over these last 40 days. What a powerful tool for discipleship!
These are just a few examples of a much bigger movement that I believe the Holy Spirit is initiating in our day. Our culture again and again promotes the tainted gospel of self-worship and the result is deep emptiness and unresolved pain. In the state Colorado this is particularly true, as over 100,000 people have moved into the Denver area in the last year and many are searching for their “pot” of gold and not finding it. The farther we run from the presence of God the more unmanageable life becomes, just read the headlines on the internet or watch the evening news!
Crying out to God in prayer from a needy heart is always the first step back to a spiritual break through, this step can revive and heal the deep pain in our hearts and has the potential for a break through in the imprisoned culture which we find ourselves living in. God gives us this lasting promise in 2 Chronicles 7:14:
“If My people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked way, then will I hear from heaven and forgive their sin and heal their land.”
It is humbling to pray, because by doing so you and I are admitting our weakness and lack of control. Weakness and lack of control fly in the face of our “self worship” culture. So when you and I submit to prayer and we realize there are others around us doing the same we know in our hearts something super natural has to be taking place. These last 40 days of prayer shared with many of you, has given me much hope for what our Good Father has around the corner. I believe this is the beginning of a movement that will bring us back to His glorious face!