140 days until the Greenock, Scotland Revival Conference
A unity in prayerThese all continued with one accord in prayer (Acts 1:14). We have already spoken of the importance of unity in mind and in heart, but this must be carried into our prayer life as well. Jesus said, If two of you shall agree on earth as touching any thing that they shall ask, it shall be done for them of My Father which is in heaven (Matthew 18:19). Have you ever put that promise to the test?
Dr. James Little tells the story of the 1857 revival in New York City and area. There was a man whose soul was moved with a deep longing for an outpouring of the Spirit in that great city. The spiritual land around him was arid and parched, and his cry was, Turn again our captivity, O Lord, as the streams in the south (Psalm 126:4).
Desiring that others should join him in concerted prayer, he displayed a little card in the window of a room on Fulton Street which read: If anyone is interested to pray for revival, come in and join me. The first day he prayed alone. Then others began to join him, until the room became too small. The burden for revival had begun to spreaduntil hundreds had caught the spirit of intercession and supplication.
Four young men in County Antrim, Northern Ireland, knelt in united prayer in a schoolroom. They longed and prayed for revival, and God met them in such a way that the whole of Ireland was affected. Indeed, that was the beginning of the 1859 revival that has influenced the country ever since.
Other instances could be cited to further prove that God honors unity in prayer. But in addition to this, there must be a fervency in prayerThese all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication (Acts 1:14). Prayer has a general connotation of waiting on God, whereas the word supplication suggests the beseeching and petitioning aspect of intercession. It is the laying hold of the Lord which will not let go or let up until something happens. This is how Elijah prayed, and James, in citing this man of prayer, writes: The prayer of a righteous man has great power in its effects (James 5:16).
This kind of praying costs, for it involves fasting, discipline and persistence. Luke recorded a prayer meeting of this kind in the twelfth chapter of Acts. We read that prayer was made without ceasing of the church unto God for the imprisoned Peter. Such was the fervency and faithfulness of the praying that before the night was over Peter was delivered from his prison cell and released to preach again the gospel of Christ. Are we prepared to set our sails by this ministry of supplication with constancy, unity and fervency? Only then can we expect to hear the mighty rushing wind from heaven. -Stephen F. Olford
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SI Moderator - Greg Gordon