Every major move of God in the past 2,000 years started with prayer. In the past when people stopped praying and became apathetic, the power and Presence of God waned in church services.
We need to pray for our personal lives, but we also need to pray for God’s plan for the Church. We each can pray with an attitude of expectancy all week long for our church.
We have a choice. We can say, “I wonder if God is going to do anything”. Or we can come to church and say, “I wonder what Heaven has for us today.” When we pray properly for our pastor; he then will become a pipe, a conduit that God will pour Himself through.
In order to have the glory of God manifest, we need to have the attitude, God, do whatever You want. Who cares if it’s the way we think church is supposed to be or not. We just want what You want.
Praying for the Gifts
One of the things that will draw unbelievers to a local church is the rain of the Holy Spirit with accompanying signs and wonders. So one way for the church to pray is for signs and wonders just like the Early Church did.
29 And now, Lord, behold their threatenings: and grant unto thy servants, that with all boldness they may speak thy word,
30 By stretching forth thine hand to heal; and that SIGNS AND WONDERS may be done by the name of thy holy child Jesus.
31 And when they had prayed, the place was shaken where they were assembled together; and they were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and they spake the Word with boldness.
The Early Church knew the power of prayer! When they prayed, the place was shaken. They prayed boldly, yet in submission to a holy God.
We can pray for the gifts to be in manifestation, but we do not have the right to say how they will manifest. Church services are not a fast-food service or a special-order place. We do not dictate to God. In fact, He does not even need our direction. All God wants is someone who will expect Him to do whatever He wants to do.
First Corinthians 12:7-10 lists the nine gifts of the Spirit or nine different ways that God will manifest Himself. Verse 11 says: “But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as He will.” The Bible says the gifts of the Spirit operate as God wills.
If God gave man the power to control the gifts of the Spirit, someone would figure a way to use the gifts for personal profit. So God in His sovereignty has determined that these operate as He wills.
I have heard about ministers who line people up and try to teach them how to prophecy to one another. But you cannot teach this. You cannot turn the gifts of the Spirit on or off like a light switch. We cannot control them.
Jesus Himself could not control them. If He could not, then we cannot. The servant is not greater than his master. Either the anointing is there or it isn’t. But whether it is or not, it’s up to the Holy Ghost as He wills. We cannot dictate when, how, or where the gifts operate, but we can follow the leading of the Holy Spirit.
What God wants is for us to come in saying, “Lord, I just want Your best. Move any way You want to. We long to see Your glory.” We can put a demand on the gifts, but we cannot dictate what will happen. If we provide that kind of atmosphere, it will amaze us what God will do. When He finds a place that will provide that kind of atmosphere for Him, He will begin to move in spectacular ways.
Pray for Laborers
There are several ways the Church can pray to help usher in the glory of God. For example, the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ can pray for laborers to go into the harvest. That’s scriptural.
36 But when he saw the muititudes, he was moved with compassion on them, because they fainted, and were scattered abroad, as sheep having no shepherd.
37 Then saith he unto his disciples, The harvest truly is plenteous, but THE LABOURERS ARE FEW;
38 PRAY ye therefore the Lord of the harvest, that he will SEND FORTH LABOURERS into his harvest.
Jesus saw the people scattered like sheep. We can look at the outright anger that is prevalent in our society today and know it’s evident we have gotten away from God, from the Bible and from Church!
Jesus told the disciples to pray that the Lord of the harvest would send forth laborers into the harvest. That’s one of the most powerful prayers the Church can pray, because laborers are the missionaries, ministers, and laypeople who are used by God to preach the gospel.
Pray for the Rain
It’s the responsibility of believers to pray for the rain of the Holy Spirit.
17 Elias was a man subject to like passions as we are, and he prayed earnestly that it might not rain: and it rained not on the earth by the space of three years and six months.
18 And HE PRAYED AGAIN, and THE HEAVEN GAVE RAIN, and THE EARTH BROUGHT FORTH
This passage of scripture is talking about natural rain. Elijah prayed and God brought rain to the earth. But there is also a spiritual principle here.
When we pray, Heaven will give spiritual rain and the earth will bring forth new-birth fruit.
Zechariah 10:1 says, “Ask ye of the Lord rain in the time of the latter rain….”
We should be asking God for signs and wonders and to pour out the gifts of the Spirit, not to entertain the Church, but to reach the world. Prayer is what will bring the rain of the Holy Spirit forth.
When you pray, pray for the rain of the Holy Spirit in your church. Pray for the rain in your city, and for every church in your region and in your state. Pray for the rain all over North America. Pray for the rain of the Holy Spirit in Europe and across the world. Ask God to pour out His Spirit.