Salvation Army’s growing involvement in worldwide movement.
by Aaron White –
What if God told us to pray continually, and we actually believed him?
Roughly seven years ago in England, a group of young Christians took that question to heart, and began an adventure in prayer that has since captured the imagination of thousands of people around the world.
Feeling that their church was not very good at prayer, they decided on a novel approach: they would pray about it. Seriously. They set aside a room in their church for 24-7 prayer, and started a round-the-clock prayer vigil that lasted three months. Each person, one at a time, would take an hour in the room, would leave a mark of their prayer (a poem, some art on the walls, a song, etc…) and would “pray in” the next person. Sensing that this was something God approved of, and that it was bigger than just their little church, they shared the idea with a gathering of young church leaders. The idea took off, and soon 24-7 prayer rooms, connected through the quickly constructed 24-7 website, sprouted up around the globe.
Seven years later, there is a 24-7 prayer presence in 70 countries. Cities and nations have run full years of prayer. People have developed and moved into 24-7 prayer-centered communities, maintaining a rhythm of prayer throughout the year, and seeing justice and mission flow out of their intercession and worship. It seems that sacrificial prayer, by focusing attention on Jesus, helps those praying to better see and love the least, last and lost around them.
Interestingly, the biggest partner worldwide for 24-7 prayer has been The Salvation Army. Something about this radical prayer movement speaks to Salvationists’ hearts, and roots. The Salvation Army has a great theology of fighting sin, evil and injustice—this non-stop prayer is a reminder that this battle truly belongs to the Lord. Yearlong Salvation Army-run prayer has happened in the U.K., Australia, New Zealand, and the U.S. Eastern Territory. Two Salvation Army “boiler rooms” (official 24-7 prayer communities) have sprung up in the U.K., and one Salvation Army prayer room has been running for over three years in Vancouver, Canada.
Young and old Salvos around the world have been learning, sometimes re-learning, the power and potential of prayer.
If you want to get more info on this incredible prayer movement, check out www.24-7prayer.com, or the following books: Red Moon Rising by Pete Greig, God on Mute by Pete Greig (new), Punk Monk by Andy Freeman (new), and Revolution by Stephen Court and Aaron White.