Impacting Cities & Communities thru Prayer
A Community of Prayer Champions, Praying Churches, Prayed-for Communities
God Himself sent me to start a prayer group in an Anglican Church and God gave a name "Abba Father" to it on the 16.6.2009.
One of things I do : I pray for a list of 42 pastors in our diocese. And during Sunday servises I remain in the room asking God to bless His word and people with alarms and for revival in our church.
Barriers:During these three years I have been there I have discovered : Some pastors are arrogant, some think intercession will take their time, some think revelations hinder their activities. In general ( in Africa- sub Sahara) pastors do not help intercessors financially.
Motivators: Financial problems in his parish some freinds in difficults and political crisis
After having a few more years of experience in leading a pastoral prayer support team than I did the last time I posted my thoughts on this topic, and because I now also oversee other prayer teams for pastoral staff at my church. I've seen and learned a lot about pastoral prayer support, and I wanted to share some updated perspectives.
One of the issues I've seen is when intercessors allow pride to gain a foothold in what they do. It causes them to isolate themselves from biblical and practical covering/shepherding and from other intercessors and the accountability that would provide. It ended up ruining their prayer ministry (although God can forgive, redeem and restore, hallelujah), hurting a lot of people connected to the prayer ministry, and wounded the heart of the pastor they were supposed to be supporting. Their original goal in being so exclusive was to protect the pastor, and it turned around to be the very thing that hurt the most.
One of the things we've done to help prevent that sort of thing from happening is to allow anyone who feels called to join the pastoral prayer teams. If we excluded people who seem to have issues, there wouldn't be any teams at all! The pastor whose team I lead trusts the Lord's Sovereign grace to protect him from those who would pray what some call "soul-ish" prayers - prayers based more on their own opinion than on the prompting of the Holy Spirit. As a result, we have a large team. In that team, there are some who have earned mine and the pastor's trust and confidence. Not because they were trying to, but because over time we have witnessed their faithfulness and commitment to the Lord's will. So when there are prayer needs that the pastor does not feel comfortable sharing with the whole group, he will ask that I send it to those few. They don't have a label, and some of them don't even realize they are considered part of the "inner circle".
As a result, we have a great team that enjoys "what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints". (from Eph. 1:18), and Kevin, the pastor we pray for, enjoys the benefits of a healthy prayer team who is accountable to him and to one another. And together, we have seen the Lord bless Kevin's ministry more than we could think or imagine in a a lot of ways.
I realize we see the precedent of the inner circle through Jesus' disciples (the large crowd that followed him, the 12, and then the 3), and I recognize He was very intentional about calling out the 12, but were the 3 - Peter, James, and John - as intentional, or was that a natural result of relationship? It seems to me that it was, and that it was also about their desire to be taught and discipled, and to grow closer to Jesus, instead of a desire to be considered part of Jesus' "elite" team. I am more than willing to be corrected, though, if I am mistaken.
PRAY FOR PRAY.NETWORK MEMBER PAUL COVERT
Would you consider praying for Paul Covert. He is the prayer pastor at Central Christian Church in Mesa AZ and a featured member of Pray.Network. Since June he has been having trouble with his eyes. The doctors are still trying to determine if he has optic nerve swelling or a tumor. The optic nerves are so small that both look the same in an MRI. The only way to tell for sure is to do a biopsy but that will cause Paul to loose his vision for sure. He is presently visiting doctors to determine a treatment plan. He is asking for prayer for healing and that he can represent Christ well during this trial.
National Prayer Leaders: Thanks for your prayers for Pastor Paul Covert, Prayer Pastor Central Christian, Mesa AZ. Here is the update/praise report from Paul that I received yesterday, Feb 3. Please continue to intercede for full healing!
+++ Message from Pastor Paul on Feb 3:
Thanks Thomas. The doctors believe that I have an autoimmune issue that is attacking my optic nerve. So they put me on an auto immune suppressant which will hopefully stop the attacking of my optic nerve. So far I am seeing well and it appears the med is working. I may have to be on this medication for some time but that is better than a tumor or radiation. So I'm praising God. Thanks brother.
+++ End Message
Blessings, Thomas Bush