I was privileged this week to be in Manhattan as the guest of Alan & Deb Hirsch – facilitated by Rich Robinson to form a small collective of global movement leaders through a ‘communitas’ exercise (Alan likes to make up words). We were hosted in Tim Keller’s church offices at Redeemer City to City.
Our purpose? To look at how the church can step outside the models, mindsets and habits that have brought us to where we are – because they will no longer move us forward. We have to change our paradigms – and then our practices.
One day was spent looking at NYC as an example city. What would we do to see the gospel saturate this city of more than 8m? I’m going to blog again with some more of my thoughts as a result, but as we rolled paper across the tables and discussed with marker pens in hand, I was fascinated to hear from kingdom change makers as diverse as Danielle Strickland and her husband Steve, leaders like Christine Caine, Dave and Jon Ferguson, Hugh Halter and Ric Thorpe; ideas came thick and fast, but what was most striking was that every table started off saying the same thing;
PRAYER: You’d have to start a city wide prayer gathering.
Everyone would have to come together for the city, lay down their own agendas, names, individual ‘brands’ – crying out as one church for a move of the Holy Spirit.
Without that, so many of the other things we did wouldn’t make much of an eternal difference. Danielle said that as she has studied the history of revival, it’s never happened without concerted fervent intercession.
Prayer has to be number 1, whatever list we make.
That’s why I was so excited to meet again with my mate Andy Hawthorne for breakfast today on my first day back in Manchester. We chatted about what God has already got started here in the Greater Manchester Prayer Gatherings but we really believe what has been so far is just building momentum for what the Lord has lined up.
Hundreds have gathered so far – but we want thousands to cry out for our 2.7 million! That will only happen if church leaders and members decide now to clear the diary, put the dates in, publicise and bring our people – giving this the same priority I believe heaven wants it to have.
The next Greater Manchester Prayer is on 27thJune . I’ll be there with as many Ivy people as I can possibly encourage, cajole, bribe and beg to come too. Join us, and pray with us.