Last night, at our mid-week Bible Study, I did something that I have only heard that others have done. Instead of teaching a study, we watched a DVD. I hesitated to do this, but as a result of some of the messages coming out of this particular preacher, I have begun to make changes to how we focus church, and what our goal of church is to be. At the start of service, before we do anything else, we start the service in prayer. I realize many do “prayer” differently, but I am a proponent of all of us praying, out loud, at once. There’s no waiting on someone to vocalize what I feel the particular burden of expressing on my own with my Christian friends.
This DVD is not a new trend for us, but there was a deep spiritual message coming from a man who has experienced many things and he had a good way of putting it. I have watched and listened to this message about a dozen times or so during these past 6 months and it has made a very deep impression on my personal walk with God, and, I hope, upon the church God has called me to pastor.
Somewhere along the line we have forgotten that first and foremost, the Holy Tabernacle that God Ordained is supposed to first be called a House of Prayer. Jim Cymbala shared this thought at a Gaither Praise Gathering in 1994 at some location in Indiana. His focus really brought to home something for me, and I hope for our church, before we are worshippers, preachers, technicians, musicians, or even attendees – we must be a people of prayer. Jesus cleansed the temple of the money changers, animal sellers, and other wares, and declared that this house of God must first be a House of Prayer for all nations.
Let the church today follow the format of our weekly service after the format that God has ordained. Let everything we do take us to prayer. Some day we will answer to God for all of the things we’ve been involved in, and if God were to ask of you – did you bring someone to me in prayer, then I ask you, what is your answer? The best form of assistance we have is taking something to God! We don’t need another book of “How To…” homilies, we need prayer!
Here’s another thing. Why do we whine and broadcast all our pains to anyone who will listen, instead of just going to the God who created us and letting Him give of His good pleasure to us?
If you want to be challenged to re-visit your purpose for God, then I encourage you to research what God has to say about prayer. Look on You Tube and you can find Jim Cymbala’s message, “My House Shall Be Called A House of Prayer” or you can find it at his church’s web site: http://www.brooklyntabernacle.org/