“Prayer always precedes Pentecost.” John Greenfield from Power from on High
“When God intends great mercy for His people, the first thing He does is to set them a praying.” Matthew Henry
Count Zinzendorf had his hands full. He had invited all kinds of religious misfits to live together on his property. Things weren’t going too well by the summer of 1727. The groups were fighting amongst themselves. He was challenged by their behavior so he sought the Lord in prayer. The Count was led in some unique ways.
First, he drafted a Brotherly Covenant. This covenant stated that they would emphasize the points of doctrine where they were united and minimize their differences. The Count met with every adult in the community. On May 12, 1727, each adult dedicated their lives and service to the Lord Jesus Christ – no matter their call or position. This was a place of unity.
This began a chain reaction of prayer and Bible study popping up all around the community. People began to stand with one another instead of against one another. This all culminated in a special communion service held August 13, 1727.
One Moravian historian wrote: “Church History also abound in records of special outpourings of the Holy Ghost, and verily the thirteenth of August 1727 was a day of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit. We saw the hand of God and His wonders, and we were all under the cloud of our fathers baptized with their Spirit. The Holy Ghost came upon us and in those days great signs and wonders took place in our midst. From that time scarcely a day passed but what we beheld His almighty workings among us. A great hunger after the Word of God took possession of us so that we had to have three services every day, viz., 5:00 and 7:30am and 9:00pm. Everyone desired above everything else that the Holy Spirit might have full control. Self-love and self-will as well as all disobedience disappeared and an overwhelming flood of grace swept us all out into the great ocean of Divine Love.”
Oh, how we need a fresh Baptism of Love today!!! People who once were divided over doctrines, cultures, and ways, were now united in Christ at the Communion table!
Acts 1:8 tells us that the purpose of the Holy Spirit coming was to endue them with power to be witnesses for Jesus Christ. Instantly they loved one another, they loved their fellow man, and they loved the world that Christ died to save.
They immediately began to feel the burden to pray. Based on Leviticus 6:13 they believed the fires of intercession should never go out on the altar. On August 26, 1727, 24 men and 24 women covenanted to begin praying around the clock. They cast lots for their individual times of prayer. (How would you like to pull the short stick of 2am daily?!?!?!). And on August 27, 1727 the 24/7/365 prayer movement of the Moravians began. It continued for over 100 years!
As these 48 adults began praying, the flame of intercession and passion for Jesus Christ grew in the community. Others began to volunteer for the Hourly Intercession and to be the answer to the prayers prayed.
Even the children began to start houses of prayer. The children would often be heard weeping and agonizing in prayer. There is no Junior Holy Spirit.
Prayer always leads to action – and the Moravian’s Hourly Intercession was marked by it. Within 25 years, this small village sent out over 100 missionaries to share the hope of Jesus Christ. Some even sold themselves into slavery believing that the “Lamb was worthy to receive the reward of His suffering.”
Today we are raising up Houses of Prayer in the model of Hourly Intercessions. Last March, we began with 21 Houses of Prayer. A House of Prayer is 2 or more people who commit to praying each week for one hour. Each House of Prayer Leader answers these three questions:
1. What is the passion in your heart that you are called to pray about at this time?
2. Who is to join you in this prayer weekly?
3. When can you meet each week to pray?
Our Fall Houses of Prayer are beginning to form. Will you take your place in the Hourly Intercessions? Please contact Pastor Julie by phone/text at 219-304-8453 or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more info or to register your house of prayer.
If ever our world needed intercession the time is now. We might have been divided over all kinds of political, health and social issues. But at the cross of Jesus, we come together as one. Let’s unite and cry out!