A Call to Prayer
Recently I’ve had a strong stirring in my heart and my spirit for authentic transforming revival. I sense God wants to do a mighty thing in our nation once again but we, His Bride, need to be prepared.
God is calling us to a season of passionate pursuit of Him. I sense a need to mobilize an army of intercessors who will PRAY the price for His Abiding Presence to once again inhabit His people. This is not about just another visitation. We are asking for a committed group of believers to consistently cry out for a spiritual awakening personally, in their community, in the Church, and across our nation.
We hear a lot today about breakthrough and revival, but true revival happens when we humble ourselves in genuine worship and repentance and acknowledge our only hope lies in the power of God. Mike May from Somebody Cares Humble sent me an email about a year ago that said, “In any community, revival can be secured from heaven when heroic souls enter the conflict determined to win or die—or if need be, to win AND die. A quote from the book, “Praying Hyde, Apostle of Prayer: The Life Story of John Hyde” by E.G. Carre…” And, as Charles Finney said, “A revival is no more a miracle than a crop of wheat.”
In a recently hosted meeting of nearly 150 leaders in the Somebody Cares Houston network, it was clear that many have the same burning in their hearts. Some of them were part of Houston’s Prayer Mountain, 40 powerful days of prayer and fasting in 1996. Others were not even in the city at that time, but have been faithfully crying out for many years for God’s presence. Knowing we cannot replicate what God so obviously ordained in 1996, we have been seeking how God would lead us as a corporate body during this season.
There are two alarming situations in the city where our ministry is based. Though often called “A City of Birthing” and “A City of Healing,” the stark reality is, we are now the number one city in the U.S. for sex trafficking, and soon to be home of the largest abortion clinic in the Western Hemisphere. As a city that is considered to be a gateway to the entire nation, these heart-wrenching situations are only a reflection of what is going on all across our country—perhaps even in your own neighborhood.
The question looms before us: What will we do about it? How can we rest on the beach of apathy and complacency while multitudes of souls are perishing in the sea of destruction? Are we willing to pay the price—and to PRAY the price—for change?
Praying John Hyde was part of the Punjab Prayer Union, which began in 1904 and was instrumental in the birthing of the Sailkot Revival in North India. Together, the Prayer Union committed themselves to the following five principles:
1. Are you praying for quickening in your life, in the lives of your fellow-workers, and in the Church?
2. Are you longing for greater power of the Holy Spirit in your own life and work, and are you convinced that you cannot go on without His power?
3. Will you pray that you may not be ashamed of Jesus?
4. Do you believe that prayer is the great means for securing this spiritual awakening?
5. Will you set apart dedicated time each day to pray for this awakening, and are you willing to pray until it comes?
We are living in a world of challenges and global uncertainties, causing despair and fear for many. It’s as if Luke 21 is happening before our very eyes, with the shakings of famines, earthquakes, pestilence, uprisings, and wars, not too mention an economy that is globally unstable. I believe this is the time spoken of by the prophet Joel in which we must weep between the porch and the altar.
Yet, Luke 21 goes on to encourage us to let these times be an occasion for our testimony!
In order for this to happen we must first address any compromise in our own lives that hinders us in confronting the serious issues of our times. We must be cleansed of heart so that we can persevere in effective prayer if we are going to experience lasting change in our personal lives, our cities, our nation, and our world. From a posture of brokenness and contrition of heart, the Lord will allow us to stand in the gap for others.
In 1857, a businessman in New York City named Jeremiah Lamphier was desperate for God to bring change to his city, riddled with poverty and crime. He issued a call for others to set aside their daily lunch hours for a time of prayer. Though it started small, Lamphier persisted and soon thousands were crying out daily in desperate prayer across the city. This resulted in the Fulton Street Revival, a movement of God that swept the city and birthed many compassion ministries that are still rescuing lives today. Thousands of lost souls in the city were saved as they cried out to God for salvation.
If God could answer the cries of the faithful ones in that day and in that city, can He not do the same for us?
We must Prepare the Bride through individual Heart Awakenings, corporate Church Awakenings and Harvest Awakenings, so that we can see an authentic Transforming Revival.
There is a price to pay and sacrifices to be made when one chooses to rescue the perishing and debased of our society. The cost must be counted and choices made to live a life of conviction and character amidst antagonistic oppositions. Consistency and time reveal the character of an individual…or lack of it. May a generation of courageous voices arise above the moral decay and noise pollution of our day, with a genuine passion for God that allows no room for mediocrity or compromise.
In his book, Revival: Its Principles and Personalities Winkie Pratney wrote, “When God finds someone with courage to pray and live a life of holiness and compassion; He can literally change the face of a nation.” Like never before, we need men and women of courage who are lovers of truth more than life itself.
That is why we are mobilizing an army of intercessors who are committed to prayer and asking God to send transforming revival. It will take persistence and passion to stir the winds of revival in this nation; we are asking God to send us those who have what it takes.
It is on my heart to mobilize ONE to commit for every thousand people in our cities and nation. In Houston, a metropolitan area of about 5 million, we are calling for 5,000 to commit to prayer. In America, a nation of around 300 million, we are calling for 300,000 to commit to prayer.
I invite you to take a courageous stand with me on behalf of the perishing. Will you be one in 5000 from the city of Houston—or one in 300,000 from across the U.S.—who will commit to pray for 30 minutes each day—as close to 12 noon as possible—for an awakening personally, in your community, and throughout the Church? Are you willing, like Praying John Hyde, to commit to the five principles of personal examination and passionate prayer?
We are not looking for numbers to reach a goal, but for those will are seriously willing to battle on their knees—like Charles Finney, Jeremiah Lamphier, and those in the Punjab Prayer Union—and to “pray the price” for eternal freedom!
Revival IS coming. It will come in one of two ways: by birth or by shaking. Let us choose to humble ourselves and press in to that place of genuine passion and intimacy with the Lord.
May our heart’s cry be, “God, break our hearts with the things that break Yours. Lord, we seek You first and ask for souls, changed lives, and revival—let it start with me!”
Many things are hanging in the balance, including our city, our nation, and beyond. The Lord reminds us to waken from our slumber, to tarry at the altar of prayer, worship, and sacrifice, all for the sake of souls.
Thank you for caring,
Dr. J. Doug Stringer
Founder and President