James writes that prayer is both powerful & effective. Jesus made it clear that when we pray, we have the ear and the attention of the God who created the Heavens and the Earth.
We believe wholeheartedly that prayer should be our first response, not our last resort. Therefore, our prayer team is wanting to get on the front foot, to be proactively praying for the people of our community. So, each week a few* individuals or families will be notified that our team are praying for them. The team will be committed to praying for them over the course of the week as well as collectively in their prayer meeting on Sunday morning before the LifeSwitch Experience. They would then love the opportunity to pray with them in person after the experience.
I love this initiative for several reasons. Firstly, a lot of people have never experienced the privilege of having someone pray with and for them. There is something so special that takes place when we pray for one another, yet many people never take up the opportunity. There are many reasons why not. Ranging from people not thinking their requests are valid, to not knowing how special and powerful it is. Some are even fearful about having someone pray for them, believing it may be a weird experience.
Secondly, it teaches people to pray. Some people are scared to pray for other people. When you have someone get alongside you and pray for you, you realise pretty quickly that it is fairly simple. Often having someone pray for you gives you all the confidence you need to pray for someone else. It truly is an easy practice all Christians should feel comfortable doing.
Thirdly, our prayer team always gets requests to pray for people in crisis – which they do pray for and always will. However, I can’t help thinking how many crisis situations may be avoided if we purposely pray for people before crisis time.
Finally, I know the intimacy and honour it is to have people pray over me. I always put my hand up when this is offered. It is special. it is inspiring. I feel loved, valued and encouraged. Yet I know the work God is doing far exceeds what I am feeling. I want everyone to experience this, to get the opportunity for this, and am stoked that we have such an incredible team who are willing to make it happen.
So, keep an eye out, or an ear out as we will be in touch with you one Monday to let you know the team are praying for you and your family that week. There are quite a few people in our community (and we’re believing we will see it grow significantly as people come to faith this year) so it may take a while, sorry.
And please, when it’s your week, do all you can to come and see the prayer team after the experience. Especially if it is outside of your comfort zone, because I’m certain our spiritual adversary will be doing all he can to stop you.
*Please note – the reason we are only doing a few people each week is so the prayer team really can lift there individuals/families up in prayer over the week leading up to Sunday. Rather than rushing through a long list, we want to pray specifically, purposefully and repeatedly for each person/family over the week.