Wisdom – Taking it into the Prayer Room

11017668_964162400313534_4613183786382334611_nTaking it into the Prayer Room

After having completed the application assignment alone, get with a group and go through the points together. Discuss practical wisdom that you can apply in the prayer room, your personal action plans that you will apply individually, and guidelines in starting a House of Prayer. Evaluate and assess your city and Christian community.

Then with the Bible and some musical instruments such as a guitar or keyboard, take it into the prayer room. Begin with praise and thanksgiving before praying through some of the Scriptures for your city (Psalm 25:4-5; 43:3-4; Ephesians 3:8b-11; Colossians 1:9-10; 2:2-3). Pray through the evaluation and assessment of your city that you made together with others, bringing to the Lord areas that are weak in your community. Pray for a Spirit of wisdom and revelation using your memory verses (Ephesians 1:17-19a).

Ask the Lord to help you apply the guidelines in starting a House of Prayer in your city. Pray specifically through several of the guidelines and points of wisdom. Pray that God helps each one of you to apply your prayer action plan. Pray that He helps each of you to develop a dynamic prayer life in the prayer room. Thank Him for what He will do in your city. End with praying “Our Prayer for Wisdom in Developing a House of Prayer.”

How to Practice Wisdom in the Prayer Room

11403171_990321821030925_1910952849621166331_nWisdom in Prayer Life Application

We’ve looked at how treasures of wisdom are released in Houses of Prayer. We’ve discovered how to develop a dynamic prayer life in the prayer room, and learned important guidelines in starting a House of Prayer. Carefully review about wisdom in the prayer room and answer the following:

  • What practical wisdom will you apply in the prayer room? – Write a paragraph that specifically relates to you and is something you can look back on as a reminder.
  • Spend time daily this week praying the following Scriptures over your city – Psalm 25:4-5; 43:3-4; Ephesians 3:8b-11; Colossians 1:9-10 and 2:2-3. Write down any insight and wisdom you have received from God through praying these verses for your city.
  • How do you plan to develop a dynamic prayer life in the prayer room? – What will be your personal action plan? Take some time and write down your action plan specifically. Look at the prayer wisdom given in this wisdom section, and adapt it to your action plan. For example, a personal Bible plan, praying the apostolic prayers, making a prayer list, praying for wisdom, social issues, etc.
  • Picture with the eyes of faith what God wants to do in your life, your ministry, and in your city – Write a prayer bringing this picture before God.
  • Study carefully the guidelines in starting a House of Prayer – Write down any ideas and concerns as you look at when and where you should have it, length of time, creative approaches, who should be involved, what you can handle, etc. Share and discuss this with other like-minded people.
  • Evaluate and assess your city and Christian community – Pray with other like-minded people regarding the following: a consistent start, a faithful team, dedicated intercessors and worshippers, careful planning and clear guidance, and the training and motivating of intercessors. What areas do you need to work on the most?

By Debbie Przybylski
Intercessors Arise International

What to Prayerfully Consider

11130260_964162560313518_4399395163024787223_n-2“Church of Christ, awake, awake! Listen to the call, “Pray without ceasing” (1 Thessalonians 5:17). Take no rest, and give God no rest… God’s spirit will reveal to us the power of a life of intercession as a divine reality, an essential, an indispensable element of the great redemption and therefore also of the true Christian life. May God help us to know and to fulfill our calling!” Andrew Murray

Day and night prayer is God’s desire, and He will enable us to do it. As you grow in establishing a House of Prayer, realize that many dedicated intercessors and worshippers are needed. You need churches that have a vision for prayer. The good news is that God is awakening His Church to pray. Prayerfully consider the following when starting a House of Prayer in your city, or increasing the prayer meetings and prayer focus in your church:

  • A small, consistent start – It is better to start small and be consistent than to try to plan a big 24/7 all year and then quit. More personnel are needed for a 365-day House of Prayer. It’s important not to despise small beginnings. Good things usually start small and appear humble. Remember Jesus was born in a manger. Speak blessing over your small prayer meetings. God will enlarge them when He wants to, and He can explode grace on your little prayer meetings in an incredible way. Stay steady and consistent.
  • A faithful team – Many different individuals with various gifts are needed in a House of Prayer. How large a team you need depends on the size and length of your House of Prayer. For longer ones you may need a general coordinator, a daily coordinator, an administrative team and office, a way to collect prayer material and make it available to intercessors, a team to clean and decorate the prayer room, someone to work out the prayer times, etc. You’d be surprised at all the little tasks that need to be done. Delegate the responsibilities carefully.
  • Dedicated intercessors and worshippers – Pray that God will raise up intercessors to pray as well as worship leaders, singers, and others. Those with a lifestyle of devotion will be the bedrock that will sustain the House of Prayer along the journey. You need to pray that God will lead you to these people. Build deep, not just wide.
  • Careful planning and clear guidance – You must think about the ongoing process of recruiting new intercessors and maintaining the House of Prayer. Ask God continually for guidance, and wait for His Spirit to lead. As the House of Prayer grows, you will need more individuals to help meet the growing practical and spiritual needs. Pray for gifted individuals, especially ones who are strong in administrative or organizing gifts.
  • Training and motivating intercessors – It is easy for intercessors to get discouraged over time so provide ongoing encouragement through seminars, training, and finding ways to minister to them. Teach people how to pray. Help them to focus on the needs of their church, community, or city rather than their own personal needs.

I’ve written several books designed for training in prayer with an application at the end of each chapter to be applied personally or in small groups. See the books dropdown button on this site for books you can study together. You will want to use these or other resources on prayer for training and motivation for your House of Prayer. Keep communicating and feeding people with prayer information.

God will give you His creative wisdom as you build the House of Prayer in your city. Perhaps your testimony will exceed your wildest expectations just as this one did:

“Our 24-7 week exceeded all expectations. More than 200 people used the prayer room, and more than 20 churches got involved. 24-7 has been one of the most productive (yes, prayer is productive!) weeks I have ever known. People were saved. The lukewarm were ignited. Unity made huge steps forward. Through 24-7, a radical vision was imparted way beyond anything our puny little talks could have accomplished. The week has also multiplied itself into three other locations.”
Peter Greig and David Blackwell

By Debbie Przybylski
Intercessors Arise International

Counting the Cost

11049476_964514350278339_5040186320063747893_nEstablishing a House of Prayer in every city worldwide is now becoming a real possibility. It’s beginning to happen in various parts of the world. This involves local churches, individuals, prayer groups, and youth groups that unite for day and night prayer on a citywide level. But we must realize that a longer prayer time—for example one month instead of one week—takes a lot more people and planning. It requires working with all your heart for the Lord and for His glory.

We must be willing to count the cost.

You may only need thirty people for a week-long House of Prayer, but you need many more for a month-long House of Prayer, or for a continuous 24/7 in your city. You also must have enough dedicated intercessors. For year long Houses of Prayer, you must plan well and provide adequate motivation and guidance.

Keep in mind that you must continually recruit new intercessors because people do drop out and move away. Try to keep the intercessors encouraged and provide training in prayer for all involved. The Intercessors Arise International Website and this Nations House of Prayer Equipping Center provides training that you can teach and print out for those in your House of Prayer. New material will be continually added to both of these websites for your use.

It’s easy to get under attack or discouraged when involved in 24/7 prayer, and that’s why we emphasized a lot about laying a solid foundation. It takes steadfast and persistent prayer. Start with what you can handle. Ask yourself or your team:

  • How strong is the prayer community in our area?
  • Are the people used to prayer, or is it new to them?
  • Are they mature Christians?

Don’t be overly ambitious if the individual community is not used to praying. Start smaller and work your way up over time. A week may be a good idea in starting. Ask God for the right pace for your community. If you are starting a long-term House of Prayer, start with only a few hours a week. Remember that God is delighted with any increase in prayer, big and small. A successful week of prayer builds momentum for more prayer and delights God’s heart.

Look at the individuals in your community. Some want to pray an hour a day while others will pray once or twice a week. Some people will come once in a while. Some churches will want to take one-hour slots (sets) while others will want two. Then you will find churches that won’t want to get involved at all, at least initially. Some Houses of Prayer will ask churches to pray one day a week or one day a month. It varies everywhere. Some will be more organized and disciplined than others. So if yours is different than in another city, that’s ok.

Rejoice in God’s plan for prayer in your city, and do it with all your heart and strength (Colossians 3:23).

In Gibraltar, the churches started with a one-week House of Prayer. Then they did it again successfully. They want a long-term House of Prayer and several are praying for it. This is exciting because the population of Christians in Gibraltar is very small. They chose a neutral location and picked a conference center called Europa Point, situated at the very uppermost tip of the rock of Gibraltar, overlooking Spain and Morocco. We were recently there praying with several of them at Europa Point. What a great place to pray.

By Debbie Przybylski

Intercessors Arise International

Creative Approaches

11018190_990332584363182_4240848183604782477_n“There are different kinds of gifts, but the same Spirit distributes them. There are different kinds of service, but the same Lord. There are different kinds of working, but in all of them and in every one, it is the same God at work. Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good”
(1 Cor. 12:4-7).

There are so many creative approaches to 24/7 prayer all around the world. The same Spirit works so many different and creative approaches to Houses of Prayer. Some examples of various places are homes, basements, shacks, chapels, church buildings, offices, shopping centers, prisons, and dedicated prayer rooms.

Ask God to show you not only the right place, but the right timing. Plan carefully. Ask yourself, “Is this the best time when people will be in town?” Look at the big picture in your city. Are you building up to something bigger evangelistically in your community or church?

We had a month-long House of Prayer in our city right before the 400th anniversary of our nation and before a big evangelistic Graham Celebration. We chose this time very carefully, and it fit perfectly into what was happening—not only in our city—but also in our nation.

Maybe you are thinking about a continuous 24/7 House of Prayer in your city and want to start by creating a short season of prayer and then doing longer ones later. Remember that the local church is the primary cornerstone of the House of Prayer. Some churches and cities like to look at the seasonal approach to prayer. It’s better to quit when you’re ahead than to drag it on too long. You want to leave people hungry and eager for the next time.

Not only are there a variety of places, there are also a lot of different approaches to 24/7 prayer. Some like to sign up for one-hour slots or sets and fill in 24 hours. Some like two-hour sets. Think about how long individuals should be in the prayer room at one time in your House of Prayer.

Here at the International House of Prayer (IHOPKC), the staff is encouraged to spend two hours at a time in the prayer room. The NightWatch spend every night in the prayer room from midnight to 6:00 A.M. and love it. Perhaps one to four hours at a time should be the limit in the prayer room, though as you can see with the NightWatch, this isn’t a fixed rule.

Some churches like to cover a week of 24/7 prayer, or one day a week for a few months that can later grow into more days a month systematically. Churches can then come together with other churches that are doing the same thing. They can each take one day a week for an entire year. This becomes a 24/7, 365-day prayer watch that goes all year.

Young people are starting Houses of Prayer on college and university campuses and even children are mobilizing into prayer watches. People all over the world are becoming willing candidates for full-time prayer for various periods of time. God is presently raising up intercessory missionaries who make prayer their full-time occupation.

Even the names vary for Houses of Prayer. They can be called prayer rooms, 24/7 watches, prayer chains, boiler rooms, prayer towers, power houses, and prayer mountains, to name a few. And the focuses might vary from praise and worship, intercession and warfare, praying the Word of God, silent meditation and soaking prayer, praying for the nations, the needs of the community, the national needs, the local church, or any combination of these.

There is extreme creativity and uniqueness to each House of Prayer. Let’s not institutionalize what God is doing according to what we think is the right and wrong way of doing it. His House of Prayer is extraordinary. He is doing something that is fresh and alive, full of variety and creativity.

By Debbie Przybylski
Intercessors Arise International

Guidelines for Houses of Prayer

10469208_968330713230036_3995578248377717720_n“Of what infinite importance is the place the intercessor holds in the Kingdom of God! Is it not indeed a matter of wonder that God should give men such power? Yet there are so few who know what it is to take hold of His strength and pray down His blessing on the world… God rules the world and His church through the prayers of His people. That God should have made the expansion of His Kingdom to such a large extent dependent on the faithfulness of His people in prayer is a stupendous mystery and yet an absolute certainty. God calls for intercessors; in His grace He has made His work dependent on them. He waits for them.” Andrew Murray

Starting and maintaining a House of Prayer is not a simple task, yet it is God’s desire and of infinite importance. His work depends on it, but it takes His wisdom and partnering with His Spirit to do it in the right way. You want to do everything in obedience and under the direction of the Holy Spirit (Psalm 127:1; John 3:8). You want to always seek to do what you see the Father doing. It is a lot of hard work for everyone involved.

This is why teamwork is so important—teamwork with the Holy Spirit and with others. Starting and maintaining a House of Prayer is
a relational ministry involving not only relating to God, but also
relating to others and praying in unity (John 15:14-15; Luke 10:1-22;
1 John 4:7-12). You want to include others who may even be different than you—different cultures, denominational backgrounds, ages, and genders. You want to build unity but enjoy diversity (Colossians 3:11; Ephesians 4:3-6).

Houses of Prayer require careful planning and clear guidance.

It’s easier to maintain a House of Prayer for a day or a week, but to have it 365 days a year is another story! You need dedicated people to keep it going when it’s long term.

We noticed that many joined us in the exciting stage at the beginning of our first one-month House of Prayer in Spain. But the second one was harder because the excitement had worn off, and some of the excitement seekers left. God had brought the House of Prayer to a different stage, and a new level of commitment was needed. But when we are partnering with the Holy Spirit, none of these things need to discourage us. After all, let’s always remember that God’s heart is for day and night prayer.

As you think about starting a House of Prayer in your church or city, fervently pray about every aspect of it. Ask yourselves the following questions:

  • How long should we continue? This is a very important question to answer. Do you want to have a one-week House of Prayer and later work up to a longer one? Do you want to have a one-month House of Prayer and include other churches in your city? Do you want to pray a few consistent hours a week all year and then increase your hours as you grow? Or do you want to have a short 24/7 in your own church to spread the vision for prayer?
  • When should we start, and who should be involved? This is important to determine in advance. You should prayerfully ask God when you should start and who should be involved. Is it to increase prayer in your church or to involve your entire city with other churches and other denominations?
  • Where should our prayer room be located, and what should be in it? Prayerfully choosing the location of the prayer room is important. If it is citywide, the location should be neutral. This is because it belongs to the city and not one individual church. But realize that God is using a variety of places. He loves creativity and variety. What you put in the prayer room and how you decorate it is also extremely important. You are creating an atmosphere for prayer.

A fixed location is a great blessing because there is a sense of God’s presence in a place that is designated for prayer. So often I have heard individuals say that they could feel God’s presence in the prayer room. Many have said, “I can pray easier without distractions in a prayer room.” For some special reason, individuals are able to leave their daily life behind when they come into a place that is used only for prayer. It’s almost as if you can immediately take a giant step forward into intimacy with God in the prayer room.

A designated prayer room gives a sense of community and accountability with others who want to pray. When I used to go into the prayer room in Virginia Beach and pray for our nation with other women who have that same burden, I felt so united and linked in purpose. There was a sense of community. The burden became lighter, and we all left with a sense of victory. And when you knew that others were going to be there at 12:00 noon on Thursdays, you felt more accountable to show up to pray.

Prayer rooms are so good because Christians are looking for a place that is holyand in an unholy worldit’s like a breath of fresh, clean air.

You are entering holy ground. Often we took off our shoes because of a sense of the holiness of God. The creative environment of most prayer rooms point people Godward in a time when we desperately need to see things from God’s point-of-view instead of men’s.

Now that I am living at the International House of Prayer in Kansas City (IHOPKC), I always hear visitors say how powerfully they sense the presence of God in the global prayer room. With a few hundred people united in worship and prayer at any given hour, you can sense the power and majesty of God on a daily and hourly basis. It’s beautiful!

By Debbie Przybylski
Intercessors Arise International