Prayerwalking to the End of the Age
Read Matthew 28:18-20. There we find the work continues. As we press on remember two things. (1) There are many people praying and working as we head toward the end of the age. (2) There are many more to reach. Also, there is a dual perspective we are to maintain. That is, (1) living for today, and (2) living with the end of age in view.
Notice what Jesus said almost 2,000 years ago in Mark 1:15. He said, the time is fulfilled and the kingdom of God is at hand. Matthew 6:10, Jesus taught the disciples (and us) to pray, “Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.”
The kingdom of God speaks of the rule and reign of Christ. The question is, has the kingdom come, or is it still on the way? The answer is yes! It is present and it is yet to be fully realized.
As you continue to walk with God and continue to prayerwalk, realize there are many who have been saved and there are many to be saved. Keep walking. God saves people one at a time. As we continue to pray we will see those who resist the gospel today changing before our very eyes. Reflect on what it was like for you before you were saved and how much different you are today.
Matthew 24:14 is a most compelling verse. Read it. When you are experiencing response to your prayers and when you do not, keep reminding yourself of the words of our Lord in this verse. Keep praying for peoples (nations) who need to be saved. Realize you and I have a part in seeing the rule and reign of Christ extended and realized so the end can come.
- Praise Him for your salvation
- Pick out a person and pray for them several times today
- Remember, God saves people one at a time just like He saved you
Prayerwalking and Your City
There is a key to being effective in sharing the gospel with the people in your city. Read what Jesus prayed in John 17:21 to see what that key is. Did you see it?
It is my hope that your church is experiencing oneness. If not, maybe you are the key to moving things in that direction so that, together, you can impact your city. From that position of oneness, where would the Lord have you prayerwalk?
What are some strategies you could implement as a church to affect your city? Think with me and share some ideas. Email me your ideas firstname.lastname@example.org. Here are a few thoughts to help prime your think tank.
- Have a prayerwalking practicum at your church. Schedule it at a key time in the life of the church. Give it plenty of promotion.
- Suggest the pastors get together at the location of each church and collectively pray for that church. Continue gathering over the next many weeks and months until all participating churches have been prayed over.
- Brainstorm with your midweek prayer meeting / Bible Study group or Intercessory Prayer Team for ways to prayerwalk.
- Figure out how many it would take to encircle your city hall. Seek to one day gather that many people to join hands and pray making a visible presence to those passing by.
- On a map divide your city into grids and pray over your city section by section until all sections are covered in prayer.
- Gather at places and/or ministries of care. Pray blessings over the ministry and pray for the people who come there.
- Remember, God wants to reach your city for Him. Think of ways He might do that beginning with you. Bear in mind that He might want to use two strategies: A small group of consistent prayerwalkers / intercessors who clearly have a call and passion for this ministry and occasional large group blitzes where people have scheduled a time to meet as a large group.
- Keep a note pad handy and write ideas as the Holy Spirit gives them to you; ways to reach your city or town through intentional intercessory prayer.
- As you drive around and “look” at the condition of your city remember to “listen” to the still small voice of God and proceed accordingly.
- How did God speak today?
- How did you respond?
- Thank Him for His leadership.
Answer: Oneness; unity; that the believers be one (I believe we can apply that to mean the believers in each church)
Shaking the World by Prayerwalking
How powerful is prayer? In Acts 4, we have a memorable event where the church came together and prayed. In that instance, when they prayed, the building where they were praying shook with such force Dr. Luke was inspired to record the event in the Bible. Read Acts 4 (key verse 31).
I have been in a lot of prayer meetings and some powerful prayer gatherings but I have not had an experience that would be exactly like that. However, where in your community would you like to see our Lord “shake things up” in a powerful way? I am not talking about the building moving or quaking but organizations and people, who are not giving glory to God, shaken to the core of their being? Think of a few as you travel through your day. I’ll list some ideas in Evening Reflection.
- Make a list of places and people where God would like to shake things up a bit.
- Go to one of those places and pray.
- Come back tonight for some reflections.
- Your church
- Schools in the area
- City/Town Council meetings
- Cell groups where people gather for evil
- Trouble spots in your neighborhood
- Offer a prayer booth at the county fair or home show
- Your ideas? email@example.com
Prayerwalking and Our Church
Today marks the conclusion of my posts, over the past several seeks, about prayerwalking. I have been traveling through the book Follow Me: Lessons for Becoming a Prayerwalker by Randy Sprinkle. In this post, I will share some ideas about “sprucing up” Wednesday Night Prayer Meeting and other prayer opportunities. As you will see below, the ideas are listed in bullet fashion with a few comments as needed.
- Ask people: During the day on Wednesday (or when you have midweek services) say to people, “I am going to prayer meeting tonight, is there any way I can pray for you?” You might be surprised what people are willing to share with you.
- Arrive early: Most churches that have a midweek service also have other activities for children and youth that happen at that same time. Arrive a little early and prayerwalk the areas where children and youth will be that evening.
- Postcards: Send a postcard to five neighbors and see if there is any way “we” can pray for them at our next prayer meeting. This could open up opportunities for a future gospel-sharing encounter. Note: An email or a text would be a good plan B.
- Go therefore: Once a month (weather permitting) meet for a few minutes at your regular prayer meeting time and then go out 2 x 2 and go prayerwalking.
These are just a few ideas. Share your ideas as you have opportunity firstname.lastname@example.org
- Seek to be salt and light to the people you encounter.
- Ask God to illumine your heart to other ways you could pray for people.
- Be ready and willing for our Lord to stretch you in this area of praying for others.
- How did our Lord stretch you today?
- Did you think of other ways to expand your prayers for other people?
- Will it be possible for you to prayerwalk your church facilities sometime this week?
Prayerwalking and Our Enemy
As we begin this day of walking with the Lord, turn once again to Ephesians 2. Previously we found two of the three forces working against us as we seek to live for Christ; the world and the flesh. There is a third. It is our enemy. Paul describes him as “the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now works in the sons of disobedience.” Here we see we have a real and a personal enemy who is seeking to do us harm.
In John 10, Jesus described him as the thief who comes to steal, kill, and destroy. His goal is to keep lost people lost and to remove the effectiveness of the believer. In order to counteract the attempts of the enemy, we need to utilize all the pieces of the armor (Eph. 6:10-18) but especially the shield of faith and the sword of the Spirit; which you know is the Word of God.
The shield is another defensive tool. It had the shape of a small door. The picture here is – small door = small faith. Large door = much faith. We need faith and a lot of it to defeat the enemy. Faith is a gift from God (Eph. 2:8) but it can be increased (Rom 10:17).
The sword is the only offensive weapon of the six. Jesus defeated the enemy with the Word in His wilderness temptation. The better we know the Word, the more affective and successful we will be in standing against the wiles of the devil.
As we do battle, remember the activity that must be commensurate with wearing the pieces of armor. It is found in Ephesians 6:18-19. It is prayer. As we prayerwalk and wear the armor, we are better equipped to win. As this dynamic continues we are assured of victory and the way is prepared for our spiritual growth.
- Suit-up for battle
- Pray without ceasing.
- Walk where our Lord would have you walk.
- Pray for people or for places where people are trapped in sin.
- What did you experience today as you walked in the Spirit?
- Did you experience any attacks from the enemy?
- How did you respond?
Equipped for Battle as We Prayerwalk
In preparation for today, read Ephesians 6:10-18. Obviously, the battle with enemy forces is a real battle. Let us take a brief look at the six pieces of armor.
- The belt of truth: When we have truth firmly attached, we are less likely to be tricked by the enemy.
- The breastplate of righteousness: Covers the heart and other vital organs. Just as the breastplate covered the physical heart of the Roman soldier, the breastplate of righteousness covers our spiritual heart.
- The shoes of the gospel: So that we are ready at all times for quick and decisive movement in spreading the good news. As we walk around in this life, we must be firmly established spiritually to maintain. We must know the peace of God by having peace with God.
- The shield of faith: To protect us from the fiery darts of the enemy. We have faith as a gift from God but we can also increase in faith (Rom.10:17).
- The helmet of salvation: The helmet covers a most vulnerable part of the body. The necessity of the helmet of salvation is for the protection of the mind; what we believe.
- The sword of the Spirit: The sword is both an offensive and a defensive part of the outfit for the soldier. Our sword is the Word of God. We need to read it, study it, memorize it, meditate upon it, and apply it to do battle everyday.
- As you begin your day, literally walk through the six pieces of armor
- Recommit to the Word as ‘the’ source of truth. Know that the righteousness you have as a blessing from God is there to guard your heart from the attacks of the enemy. Be ready to share the message of the gospel. Live a life a faith and increase in faith. Be clear in your mind about what you believe and do not let the enemy deter you. Know the Word is there for us offensively and defensively.
- Pray where the enemy is being successful. Pray that the light of truth would penetrate that area.
- Did you have an experience (or several) today where the flesh tried to direct your thoughts or actions?
- What did you do? How did you respond?
- What piece of armor was the most useful?
Spiritual Warfare and the Church
When we put too much focus on our enemy, or our problems, they seem larger than our all powerful Lord God. In those moments, we need to step back, take a fresh look at our Lord, and see how small our enemy is by comparison. What did the enemies of the church say about the believers in Acts 17:6? What a badge of honor to wear.
From the early church we see, in the book of Acts, four central elements that were prominent. See if you can find them.
- ______ (1:14; 3:1; 4:24; 6:4)
- _____ ___ _____ (4:32-37)
- ________ ____ (4:19-20)
- __________ _____ (3:12vv; 4:8vv)
Rather than focusing on their problems or the enemy, they focused on the Lord. When we pray, we are doing spiritual warfare. We are invading the enemy’s territory (See Eph. 2:1-2). We do not focus on him, we focus on the Lord, but we are not unaware of the battle that rages.
- Walk in victory
- Walk with your spiritual eyes open
- Be aware of the war that rages
- Review the four elements
- Intercede where the Lord leads
- As you review the four elements that were prominent in the early church, are there any areas where you need to improve?
- Confess this using 1 John 1:9 and then improve in that area.
- Prayer (1:14; 3:1; 4:24; 6:4)
- Living out truth (4:32-37)
- Standing firm (4:19-20)
- Proclaiming truth (3:12vv; 4:8vv)
Prayerwalking and Spiritual Warfare
A pattern has existed for nearly 2,000 years. From the beginning of the New Testament church, that pattern has been response and resistance. There have been and continue to be those who respond favorably and embrace Jesus as Lord and Savior. There have also been those who passively or very actively resist our Lord and His gospel message.
When we face resistance or outright opposition to the gospel, how should we respond? Some of the earliest followers of Jesus give us tremendous insight. What did Peter and John do in Acts 4 when they were told to not mention another word about Jesus?
- They answered respectfully (vv.19-20)
- They fellowshipped with believers (v.23)
- They praised God (vv.24-28)
- They sought boldness to continue (vv.29-31). This boldness has continued down through the years at various levels.
When we face opposition to the gospel message, we are in the midst of spiritual warfare. As we engage in warfare, the words of Ephesians 6:12 are vital. Read that verse and fill in the blanks. We do not fight with ____ _____ but with ____ forces. The opposition we face is often manifested in other people but we do battle with the enemy and evil forces. One of the ways we do battle is on our knees and on our feet in prayer. There are several truths to remember as we engage the enemy and his territory.
- Do not believe Satan. He will lie to you (Gen 3:1-8)
- Do not carry on a conversation with him (vv.2-3)
- Do not focus on him
- Trust God, Jesus, and His Word as you follow the Holy Spirit (John 14:1, 6; 17:17; Rom. 3:4)
- Talk to the Father throughout your day (Luke 18:1; 1 Thess. 5:17)
- Focus on the Lord (Heb. 12:1-2)
Throughout Your Day:
- Praise God in prayer as you walk.
- Seek the Holy Spirit’s guidance.
- Go to a place where the enemy has great influence. Claim God’s power and presence on that place to reclaim that ground for His glory.
- Be aware of the tendency to focus on the enemy. Immediately refocus on the Father, our Lord, and the Holy Spirit.
- What did you experience today?
- Did you experience any struggles?
- Did the enemy hinder you in a specific way?
- How did you respond?
Ministering In Unwanted Places
Where will you go today or where should you intentionally go today that for all practical purposes it is marked “Do not enter.” I am not suggesting you violate the laws of the land or put yourself in physical danger. I am speaking of our obedience to follow Christ wherever He leads.
Maybe it is a place where Jesus is not wanted. Maybe it is a person (you feel) would not be interested in hearing the gospel. Who has erected that sign? Have they put up that sign? Did the enemy put up that sign? Was that sign erected by your fears of rejection? We may encounter all three of these today. Would you be willing to adopt the last eight words of Luke 9:57 as your commitment for today and/or for life?
- Make the commitment as you begin your day
- Walk forward with Him
- Is there any place you have been unwilling to prayerwalk but you knew He wanted you to go there? Prayerfully consider going there today.
- Ask God to show you people and places spiritually marked “Do Not Enter.” Pray there.
Being Ready and Available
As you begin this day, think of what prayerwalking is. We could describe it as talking to God for people. It is our expression of His love He gives to us for other people. It includes seeing where people are and joining them. How could you express His love today?
Turn to Luke 19 and read the first ten verses. What do you see there?
- Jesus was walking
- He was passing through a town (Jericho)
- There was a crowd of people
- There was one man (Zacchaeus)
- He was seeking
- He was needy
- He was ready
- Jesus saw him
- Jesus reached out in love
- People nearby did not understand
- His words became a bridge to His heart
- We will be walking today
- There will be many people
- There will be someone who is seeking, needy, and ready
- Walk in touch with our Lord so you can see them as God sees them
- Reach out in love (Remember: He is the initiator we are the responders)
- Your words can become the bridge as you speak to them in love
- Consider your present station in life
- How could God use your present station (job, school, lifestyle) in life as a bridge to others?
- Jot down a few thoughts
- Be open to His insights
- Ask Him to sanctify (make special) your station in life for His glory
- As you encounter people, feel free to tell them what you are doing – that you are praying for people
- Ask them if you can pray for them (“Is there any way I could pray for you?”)
- Some will resist but someone will be ready
- See their readiness as God’s preparation for that heart and life
- If they ask why you are doing this, answer appropriately
- “Because someone prayed for me one day.”
- “Because God has put a love in my heart for people.”
- “Because God has put a love in my heart for you.”
- Be still, be ready, and listen to what they have to say and then, right there, pray for them
- How did you encounter God today?
- Did someone else encounter God through you?
- Praise God for His work today.