In the midst of the “decline” of the American church, and the drastic shift of the culture away from Biblical morality, many are tempted to be discouraged and wonder, “What can we do?”. There is a war going on so what can we do? The answer to what we need to do is this: Pray. Let me give you three examples from recent history that backs up the Biblical truth that God acts in powerful ways when his people pray for him to act.
- The First Great Awakening began largely in North Hamptons MA in 1730s with the preaching of Jonathan Edwards and George Whitfield and the renewed commitment to pray.
- The Great Prayer Revival began on Sep. 23, 1857 in New York City when a man named Jeremy Lanphier begins to pray and then invites thousands to pray in a rented tent on Fulton Street to pray. Sadly, only six people show up the first day. But those six people begin to pray and three weeks later those six people become 40. After 5 months over 10,000 gathered there every day to pray. Over the next three months, revival swept the nations and over 1,000,000 people put their faith in Jesus.
- The Jesus movement began in the early 1970s. In this movement of God, like the others, the prayer of God’s people was central. Thousands of young people were coming to Christ through the preaching of God’s word and the prayers of his people. Over 400,000 people were baptized in a single year by Southern Baptist Churches.
If we want to see God move in our community, in our culture, and in our world, we need to start with prayer. Though God is sovereign, he is pleased to work through the prayers of his people. So when we pray, God is ready to answer. So let’s join the saints around the world right now who are praying for the next great awakening.