I love the the Acts of the Apostles.
Once again I have been reading this New Testament story and I have been caught up in the expectant and vibrant faith of the early church. Their zest for Christ and for sharing His good news, their sacrifice, and their ministry all draw me up short. The power of the Holy Spirit displayed every day in the lives of those first disciples amaze me. And I come away asking how this power, zest, and vibrant faith can be ours.
Then I go back to the first chapter of Acts. “They all joined together constantly in prayer” (Acts 1:14). I turn to Acts 2:42: “They devoted themselves to the apostles' teaching and to the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and to prayer.” Moving ahead to chapter 3: “One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the time of prayer...” (Acts 3:1).
It seems that wherever I read in the book of Acts, a prayer meeting is taking place. It was in prayer that they drew lots over Matthias. They were in prayer when the day of Pentecost arrived and the Spirit fell. While some were in jail, others were praying. After Saul encountered Christ, he spent three days in prayer. In that early church, every Christian was a praying Christian.
Prayer is the driving force behind all the power and the miracles and the expectant faith. Prayer is everywhere in Acts!
“Pray for great things, expect great things, work for great things, but above all pray.” - R.A. Torrey
The disciples in Acts, did exactly that. Above all, they prayed!
Above all, do you pray? Are you devoted to prayer as your driving force? Are we desperate enough to want to be like the early church with its power, its zest, its faith? Do we want to be full of the Holy Spirit?
At First Free, we are committed to prayer. We want everything that happens here to be saturated with prayer. So we are very excited to introduce our new Prayer Room. It is located in the lobby across from the Welcome Desk. If on any Sunday morning, at any time, you would desire to pray or be prayed over, we would love for you to stop into the prayer room. We want to be open to what the Holy Spirit is doing!
Tim Lund, our prayer team coordinator, shares this: “We have already seen that the need for prayer is great with a variety of requests which have included things like a house offer being accepted, work-related situations, family loss, restored health and healing, salvation for friends and family members, marriages, youth ministry needs, God's direction in retirement, addictive situations, and just the energy for the day. Sometimes we find our team crying out to Jesus for our friends that come by the Prayer Room. Sometimes we laugh and rejoice. In the prayer room we (the prayer team) listen, share a promise from God's word, and then we pray and stand waiting as God moves in the situation. But we always stand in assurance that He hears when we pray and is moving in our hearts and lives.”
Besides the prayer room, every Wednesday night from 6:45 – 8:00 pm a group gathers together to pray for our church body and the prayer requests that are shared and published in our “Weekly Prayer Guide”. Once a month we have the Deep, a powerful time of personal prayer and intimate worship, on Wednesdays from 6:30 to 8:00. You are invited to join us at either or both of these times.
Another opportunity to pray for our church is by receiving our weekly, “Knee Mail”. This is three or four prayer requests we send out via email each Monday or Tuesday. You can get on that email list by calling the church office. Again, our goal is that everything that happens here at First Free is saturated with prayer.
This year, I ask that would you commit to pray . . . above all else!