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“if prayer clings to the hope we share in Christ, then prayer should reflect our togetherness in Christ. If prayer has a gospel shape, then by implication it must have a church shape.”

~ John OnwuchewaPrayer, 37.

The event that has become known as the Great Awakening actually began years earlier in the 1720s. And, although the most significant years were from 1740-1742, the revival continued until the 1760s.
What was the Great Awakening? Know the Facts & Summary

Many of the early Puritans and pilgrims arrived in America with a fervent faith and vision for establishing a godly nation. Within a century the ardor had cooled. The children of the original immigrants were more concerned with increasing wealth and comfortable living than furthering the Kingdom of God. The same spiritual malaise could be found throughout the American colonies. The philosophical rationalism of the Enlightenment was spreading its influence among the educated classes; others were preoccupied with the things of this world.

When Theodore Frelinghuysen, a minister of the Dutch Reformed Church, came to begin his pastoral world in New Jersey during the 1720’s, he was shocked by the deadness of the churches in America. He preached the need for conversion, a profound, life-changing commitment to Christ, not simply perfunctory participation in religious duties. Presbyterian Gilbert Tennent was heavily influenced by Frelinghuysen and brought revival to his denomination. Tennent believed the deadness of the churches was in part due to so many pastors having never been converted themselves. His book On the Dangers of an Unconverted Ministry caused quite a stir!

Origins of the Great Awakening

The event that has become known as the Great Awakening actually began years earlier in the 1720s. And, although the most significant years were from 1740-1742, the revival continued until the 1760s.

Many of the early colonists had come to the new world to enjoy religious freedom, but as the land became tamed and prosperous they no longer relied on God for their daily bread. Wealth brought complacency toward God. As a result, church membership dropped. Wishing to make it easier to increase church attendance, the religious leaders had instituted the Halfway Covenant, which allowed membership without a public testimony of conversion. The churches were now attended largely by people who lacked a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. Sadly, many of the ministers themselves did not know Christ and therefore could not lead their flocks to the true Shepherd. Then, suddenly, the Spirit of God awoke as though from an intense slumber and began to touch the population of the colonies. People from all walks of life, from poor farmers to rich merchants, began experiencing renewal and rebirth.

The faith and prayers of the righteous leaders were the foundation of the Great Awakening. Before a meeting, George Whitefield would spend hours–and sometimes all night–bathing an event in prayers. Fervent church members kept the fires of revival going through their genuine petitions for God’s intervention in the lives of their communities.

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His Kingdom or My Comfort Praying?

by Jon Graf

Longtime Presbyterian minister, Dr. Wilbur Chapman (early 1900s) was 26 when called to be pastor of Wanamakers Church in Philadelphia. His first Sunday, an old gentleman came up to him and said, “you’re much too young to be the pastor of such a fine church as this.” Chapman thought the guy was a kook. But the gentleman went on to tell him that he had decided to pray for him, that the Holy Spirit’s power would fall on him each time he stepped into the pulpit. And he had another man who would pray with him.

Chapman report that those two men soon turned into 10, the 20, then 50, and finally more than 200 men who gathered each Sunday morning before services and pray for the Holy Spirit’s enablement. Over the next three years the church saw 1,100 people come into the kingdom—more than 600 of them men.

Somewhere along the line churches have lost sight of what they should be praying for! Today, most churches’ prayers are almost exclusively for needs within the body. Prayers that each person’s life would get back to normal. Seldom are there prayers that cry out for the fullness of Jesus Christ to come upon a body, for an outpouring of the Holy Spirit onto a church…

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“This is our problem–and it seems many churches simply don’t realize how little they pray together, or how little their prayers reflect the bigheartedness of God.” pray more. Not rocket science, I know.”

~ John OnwuchewaPrayer, 14.

“From the Day of Pentecost, there has not been one great spiritual awakening in any land which has not begun in a union of prayer, though only among two or three; no such outward, upward movement has continued after such prayer meetings have declined.”

A.T. Pierson, quoted by Arthur Wallis, In the Day of Thy Power, p. 112

 

“The church of Jesus Christ was birthed as a world-changing force at a prayer meeting. In that upper room in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost, as the small group of disciples was gathered to pray continually and wait on God to send the gift of the promised Holy Spirit” (Acts 1.4-5; 14).

~ Andrew M DavisRevitalize,94

“…a church’s commitment to prayer is one of the greatest determiners of its effectiveness in ministry.

Prayer is oxygen for the Christian. It sustains us. So it follows that prayer must be a source of life for any community of Christians. It is to the church what it is to individuals–breathing. Yet many of our gatherings could be likened to people coming together merely to hold their collective breath. This would explain why people seem to have so little energy for actually living out the Christian life.

But breathing together is what our churches need.”

John OnwuchekwaPrayer23.

“My mission is first to the churches.When the churches are aroused to their duty, men of the world will be swept into the Kingdom. A whole church on its knees is irresistible.”~ Evan Roberts

“Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” –Romans 12:2

The nation cannot afford a sidelined church, taken out by worldliness and confusion. The Apostle Paul commands believers to allow ourselves no longer to be conformed by worldly patterns, but rather to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. Only then we will understand the will of God, not just for our own lives, but so that we can be a prophetic voice to our nation. Sometimes the best way to pray for our nation is to pray for revival in the church!

Pray for a transformation in the church through a renewing of our minds through the Word of God.

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First Responders Homicide PrayerWalk: MondayJune 4th, 6:00 PM at 11th & Farnam (near South Entrance to Gene Leahy Mall); Omaha, NE

Police and News Reports: One killed, Six injured in Old Market area.

20 yr-old Jasmine Harris died at NMC following a shooting at 11th & Farnam on Saturday, around 11:45 PM.  Six others were injured following an altercation which escalated to gunfire.

The six other victims were all treated for non-life threatening injuries at area hospitals and have identified as:

Dewayne Staley Jr., 28

Makye Thomas, 15

Gregory Austin, 19, possible non-gun related injury

Kristen Prater, 16

Velia Vasquez,18

Robert McGhee-Gould, 20

11th & Farnam is one of the the street-side entrances to along the south side of the Gene Leahy Mall right by the two long slides where many of us have taken our families.

This incident may be related to gun violence in the area about a month ago. In 2012 two gangs squared off in a nearby parking lot which left a 19-year-old dead on the first weekend of the College World Series.

Directions:  At 6:00 PM, meet at 11th & Farnam in front of the south entrance to the Gene Leahy Mall. 

It is my understanding that family and friends will be at the PrayerWalk so we would appreciate those who can help help us care for those grieving and pray into this neighborhood suffering violence from human bloodshed.

Click here for a Google Map, then click on the address on left side: 

Thank You for helping to make a difference in reducing violence in our city.

Blessings,

Dave Gehrls
Christ For The City Omaha
First Responders Homicide PrayerWalks
402-651-3136
dave@cfci.org

August 2019
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