First Steps to Becoming a House of Prayer for All Nations
We are on a journey for our churches to become Houses of Prayer for All Nations. As we restore prayer to the position of priority it held in the early church, God will once again display a church of character and power to the world!
To help Heartland churches become Houses of Prayer for All Nations, we have five leaders who are being trained and Certified as Prayer Force coaches: Stuart and Sheri Sherrill, Terry Lowder, Steve Brown, and Dustin Gardner. Any of us leaders would love to work with you and your church in this process.
The IPHC has adopted Prayer — The Heart of It All by P. Douglas Small as the recommended small group study to introduce our congregations to what being a House of Prayer is. In addition to the book, there is a Study Guide available for each participant that will open up each chapter in a much deeper level than simply reading the book. Pastors and leaders can also order a kit that includes a Leader’s Guide, PowerPoints, short introductory videos for each chapter by Doug Small, in addition to the book and Study Guide. These can all be ordered at https://alivepublications.org.
There is a process involved in becoming the House of Prayer Jesus wants your church to be. Strive to be thorough and in-depth versus being superficial. This is a drastic change to existing culture for most believers and churches.
In a nutshell, here is the process to begin. It is okay to spend a year just getting these steps in place. These are the first three markers of a praying church:
- A Praying Pastor and Prayer Leaders
A church will never be a House of Prayer if the senior pastor doesn’t take the primary responsibility for leading in this quest. Many pastors have a sense that their prayer life should be greater. We are currently seeing leaders transformed in personal prayer.
Eventually you will have multiple prayer leaders in the church. They don’t start as leaders, however. They start as prayer learners. The ones who demonstrate a deep an ongoing hunger to learn more will become the leaders who spark hunger in the whole congregation!
- At-home Daily Prayer
The statistics for prayer at home are not good. Most believers, including ministers, pray less than 10 minutes a day. Only 6 – 9 percent of believing couples consistently pray together. The family altar has all but disappeared. A praying church will grow out of praying homes.
You will see an unbelievable transformation in the discipleship level of your members as they start learning to pray over an open Bible. Individuals will stop describing prayer as a duty, a discipline, or a drudgery. They will instead call it a delight!
- Church-wide Prayer
A praying church has to have a time and place to pray together. It will start smaller than you want. There will be people whose absence disappoints you. No matter. Start with a church-wide prayer meeting.
In these prayer meetings, your church will start to regularly meet with God. People will learn how to pray — and yes, many of your people do not know how to pray.
Friend, if prayer does not have the place of priority in your church that Jesus wants it to have, start the process today. Reach out to a Prayer Force Coach and ask them how to get started. Believe that God is ready to start a process of transformation in your life and your church that will amaze you when you look back in the years to come! Become a House of Prayer for All Nations!
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