When I became a Christ-follower, at 36 years old, I knew it was because my wife and her church had prayed extensively for my lost soul. Because I was convinced of that fact, I embarked on the rest of my life journey to become a person of prayer. I want to be the guy that prays before he makes a single plan or takes a single step. It would be awesome if I could tell you that after all of these years, I am that man. But I am not.
When the serious nature of COVID19 became apparent I knew what we needed to do. We needed to pray. A series of texts and a Zoom call with Pastor Tom Savage, SCBI’s Prayer Coordinator and pastor of Sugar Creek Baptist Church in West Terre Haute, and it was set. We would call all Southern Baptists in Indiana to join in a Zoom Prayer Gathering on Thursday evenings at 8 pm Eastern. We would fight the virus and its effect on our communities and our churches on our knees.
I had grandiose visions of hundreds of us, from Evansville to Jeffersonville, Crown Point to Richmond, seeking the face of the only One that has the Authority and Power to do anything about the virus. My plans, however, were not God’s plans. On April 2, our first Prayer Gathering, we had less than twenty people. It was the high attendance day. On May 28 we had seven pray-ers. My plan – gazillions. God’s plan – seven. As always, His plan is way better.
The truth of the matter is the Thursday night Prayer Gathering has become a highlight of my week. God has used it to remind me of the distance between my abilities and His. I have been privileged to hear Saints humbly declare their lack of prayer prowess followed by times of them calling down the power and presence of God upon the group. I feel as the meeting ends that I have been in the Throne room of the King.
There is good news in these times. If the virus came only to allow me the opportunity to join with these brothers and sisters from across our state to pray, then I count it all joy. “I will lift up my eyes to the mountains; From where shall my help come? My help comes from the LORD, Who made heaven and earth.” Psalm 121:1–2
“The great people of the earth today are the people who pray. I do not mean those who talk about prayer; nor those who say they believe in prayer nor yet those who can explain about prayer; but I mean those people who take time to pray.”
S.D. Gordon, Quiet Talks on Prayer, 1904