The list of things that people ask God for is long and diverse. But no request carries the same lasting impact as this one: asking for a spirit of prayer. Not for more prayer in general, but for a deeper, expanding prayer-hunger for his Glory. This post touches on three important pieces that should be part of our praying as we ask for a prayer movement.
This is an add-on to the earlier post, Prayer Movement, which focused on God’s message to his prophet, Zechariah:
And I will pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication (Zech 12:10)
It was an encouraging word, but also really challenging. The Lord’s plan was to pour out a spirit of grace and supplication on his people. He connected the arrival (breakthrough) of his amazing promises to their praying. His prayer plan involved two things: ignition and movement.
God’s Spirit provides the spark for extraordinary prayer (he pours out), but hearts must be open to praying beyond ‘normal routine’. He enables sustained prayer (a spirit of grace), but hearts must remain hungry for the Glory it serves. The prayer movement is of God, but his people must be willing to be moved.
Throughout history, the Lord has reinforced this spiritual principle: he stirs and enables extraordinary prayer as a ‘highway of agreement’ for the arrival of his promised breakthrough. But he looks for people hungry enough for his Glory to ask for a spirit of prayer.
Ask for a Prayer Movement
King David’s dedication of the Tabernacle in Zion (1Chron 16) did more than consecrate a tent for the Ark. It launched a Levitical prayer movement that formed the core of the Davidic kingdom’s wellbeing and expansion. When Christ’s New Covenant mission began, the Spirit showed the apostles the connection to that Davidic prayer core (Acts 15:12-18). A prayer priority was to be at the heart of Kingdom expansion among nations
David composed the music for the dedication event. His song carried a sound from God’s heart, a call amplified to successive generation by Levitical choirs. Verse 11 is a centerpiece of the song, and carries three defining elements as we ask for a prayer movement:
Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always
- DESPERATE for God Look to the Lord
It is my conviction that we are never going to have revival until God has brought the church of Jesus Christ to the point of desperation. Stephen Olford
- There’s a desperation deficit in the church. Not a deficit of prayer for God to answer needs, but a shortage of desperation to know God’s Glory. Lament. Talk to the Lord about how deeply the desperation deficit affects you.
- There is no person or power that can ‘stir up’ that fresh desperation for the Glory of God, apart from the Spirit of God. Use this truth as an appeal to the Lord as you ask for a fresh outpouring of a spirit of prayer.
- Offer yourself as one who will look to the Lord with an increasing desperation to know his Glory, a person unashamed to be an example of the desperation that will characterize the prayer movement God desires.
- DEPENDENT on God Look to…. his strength
- Visualize the prayer movement you long to be a part of, the type and size of the breakthrough needed for the spirit of prayer to fill the church. Celebrate the freedom of total dependency on the Spirit of God for that to become a reality.
- Humbly admit your need of the Spirit of grace to sustain your prayer passion, protect your heart from distractions, stretch faith’s reach, empower your will, overcome every obstacle opposing prayer for his Glory, and excite your spirit with the anticipation of answers!
- Offer yourself as a pray-er living to serve his Glory – an imperfect pray-er, yes, but a movement catalyst in Christ’s name.
- DESIRE for God above all else seek his face always
- The appetite to know the Lord more – to seek his face – is at the core of prayer movement. Even good prayer goals and urgent asking points can distract us from this. As you ask for a prayer movement, make unhurried time for prayers of hunger for him.
- Desire for the Lord can’t be limited to a few songs in a worship prelude before we pray. The desire to see his face (more) is an always enjoyment of people living in his company. Consecrate to being a person always hungry for the Lord.
- Declare to the Lord your great motivation in asking for a prayer movement: that hunger for him will spread and deepen throughout his church – and that you want your life to be a ‘forerunner example’ of the needed movement of prayer-hunger for his Glory.