Last night (Wednesday, June 23, 2021), I had the privilege of leading my first Wednesday night service at Church on the Hill (COTH). I had not been a part of a Wednesday night service in a while, and I wasn’t even sure what we were supposed to do – but I figured if we worshipped and sang to Jesus and prayed and talked to Jesus that we would be okay. And we were more than okay.
We did a few things last night in our hour together, but my main goal was to introduce them to “Praying the Scriptures” back to God. Now this was a fairly mature group of believers who had most likely prayed through scripture before, but they “took off” last night with even new passion and authority. It was holy and it was beautiful.
Quite a few years ago, I went to the International House of Prayer (IHOP) in Kansas City and heard Mike Bickle teach on the Praying Scripture. He provided a list of New Testament/Apostolic prayer and promises. This has been one of my favorite prayer lists to return to through the years – prayers from Ephesians 1:16-19, Ephesians 3:16-20, Colossians 1;9-11, and more. They are so powerful for numerous reasons. These prayers and promises are rich with depth regarding the church’s need for wisdom, revelation, oneness, power, strength, boldness, love, maturity, and more. The other reason they are powerful is that they are God’s Word. When we pray God’s Word back to God, we know we are praying the will of God. When we pray the promises of God back to God, we are praying the heart and mind of God. It is like a child coming boldly to their Father reminding him of what He promised, and asking Him to make it happen.
So at the close of our time last night, we practiced praying these New Testament Prayers and Promises. We would read the scripture aloud first, and then turn it back to God in prayer. When I first invited those in the gathering to begin to pray these promises, it was a little quiet for a minute… I thought to myself, “surely someone is going to pray…. I think.”
And then Lynn Starks stood and read one of the passages from Philippians 1 where Paul prayed for their love to abound for one another in all discernment and resulting in righteousness among them. After Lynn read the scripture, she then turned it back to the Father asking Him to do this at COTH. As soon as she called out for God to release love in us, to mark us with love, to fill us with discernment, the room was alive with the Spirit’s witness to the WORD of God. This was a prayer that honors God. This is a prayer that connects with God. I had Holy Spirit goose bumps thinking – Yes. Yes. Yes. Do it Lord.
And then another stood and read one of scriptures and beseeched heaven to make it come to pass in us. You could sense the power and anointing released into the atmosphere. You could begin to sense the boldness in the prayers and petitions, and I could feel faith in the room. We were praying the promises of God back to our Heavenly Father and it had power! It was hitting the mark. It was as if prayer and prophecy were crossing over into a place of focused intercession – where heaven meets earth. I felt the fullness of these prayers expressing God’s will that are more than enough for our needs.
The bottom line: It was a good Wednesday night service. We sowed into heavens. Next week, as I begin my new charge as lead pastor, we are committing a solid week to prayer – morning, noon, and night. I can’t wait – I can’t wait to keep praying the promises of God with these people. Let it rain Lord. Hear our cries. We are hungry for a move of God!
Here are just a couple of my favorite NT prayers for you today.
Find below the Prayer List that I shared last night.