3rd June 2023

  Penny Lyon
(Out Of The Ashes Front Woman)
  and Huanyan consider


Was Revival
Founded On Prayer?

Finding stories about the prayer that has founded and
sustained churches was not difficult, but getting the
prayer warriors who had done the praying to tell those
stories was remarkably difficult.

I have come to the conclusion that the most courageous
prayer warriors are a shy and self-effacing breed, so
determined that all the glory should go to God
that it's very hard to extract their story.

One lady I spoke to was not prepared to be interviewed for the radio
She told me of the months of prayer involved and some of the surprising
things that The Lord had them doing, from getting up in the small hours
of the night to pray, to march around the site of the church and 'claiming'
the ground for The Lord -
total obedience and sensitivity were called for.

We are actually better at praying for those things that inspire passion in us.
Praying for our church communities and/or buildings comes less naturally.

But the church I have come to love, to be nurtured and inspired by,
was one that was founded on consistent, committed prayer by
a small group of people.

Holy Trinity, just up the road in Cheltenham was down to the last three
congregants and had been consigned for closure by the diocese when
those last three ladies committed themselves to ongoing,
consistent prayer over a prolonged period.

That church is now vibrant with life with hundreds attending every Sunday.
Our church, the body of Christ, should be the first thing we pray for,
not the last.


By Huanyan

The church needs to experience revival, starting in each single individual.

I started some thinking about this issue on revival and prayer.
I cannot avoid the famous passage from 2 Chronicles 7:13-14.

13  When I shut up the heavens so that there is no rain,
    or command locusts to devour the land or send a plague among my people,
14  if my people, who are called by my name,
    will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and
    turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven,
    and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.

.....2 Chronicles 7:13-14.

The context of the passage talks about Solomon's prayer to God after
the completion of the temple. God was essentially answering Solomon
that in the event when Israel turns away from Him but repents later,
God will then forgive them and heal their land.

So one thing must be clear.
The immediate context is not about Christians, it is about Israel.

But since we know that as Christians, we are also people who are called
by God's name, then we need to understand how this passage applies to us.

I do believe that as Christians, we need to repeatedly seek God's face,
if we have found that our ways are not in accordance to God's words.

The implicit claim is that the prayers resulted in the revivals.
Or put it in another word, prayers are the cause of the revivals.

There are a few reasons for prayer.
Firstly, God wants us to pray so that we can depend on and trust in Him.
Secondly, this is a means to a deeper fellowship with God.
Thirdly, prayer gives us an opportunity to be involved in activities
that are eternally important.

The keys to effective prayers lie not just in our faith, but also in us
praying in accordance to His will in humility and not allowing
our life of disobedience to become the hindrance to our prayer.

Revival is then not a result of people coming together to pray.

If corporate revival happens first at an individual level,
then we need to realise that the prayer is the consequence of a
convicted individual who has chosen to align himself with God's words.

In that case, this means that the Holy Spirit has firstly come and do
His work of convicting the individual.

By extension, we can say that revival is the result of the
Holy Spirit's work in the individuals' lives, not the result of prayer.

Once we realise that, we can then say that revival and prayer have a
positive co-relationship.

I am of the view that we need to remain guided in how we make conclusions
about stuff such as revival and prayer.

So, do you agree with the conclusion?
If yes, why?
And if no, why not? I look forward to hearing from you.

The Blog of Penny Lyon
Thoughts And Words From Out Of The Ashes Front Woman
I graduated from the National University of Singapore where
I came to know Christ during his undergraduate days after
studying the historicity of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
My personal mission is to lead adult Christ disciples
to engage the world with sound and biblical reasoning.