Laurence Sharman shares about our first in person global prayer watch since the pandemic.
It was great to gather together in person for the first time in three years in The Father’s Heart Church (part of the Welsh Presbyterian Church) in Birmingham.
We started with strong worship, using the scripture from Isaiah 60:1 – Arise, shine for your light has come and the glory of the Lord has risen on you and throughout the day, we declared ’Arise, shine…’ Over many different situations and circumstances.
We focussed our praying on the nations of Turkey and Syria in the aftermath of the recent earthquake, knowing that the underground house church network in Syria is growing at a phenomenal rate. We declared the Name of Jesus and prayed for God’s kingdom to come across Turkey, Syria and the whole of the Middle East. We also focussed on the 110 Cities prayer initiative that has now carried on from 2022 into 2023 and we received the news that there are now 110 million people praying for the 110 cities around the globe during the 12 months of 2023.
Bringing things a little closer to home, we focussed our prayers on the home nations, praying first for the nation of Scotland where the largest gathering of Church Leaders met in January 2023, to pray and fast for the nation. We focussed our praying in Northern Ireland and the stage that the Northern Ireland Protocol has reached, calling out to God for breakthrough and thanking God for the prayer that has been taking place around the 32 counties of Ireland in recent months. This prayer has been duplicated which is exciting to see the level of prayer for the Isle of Ireland.
Moving on to Wales, their vision has been to find a ‘person of prayer’ in every city or town across Wales – this vision is now complete and we stood with Wales in our prayers to believe for revival across the nation. In England there has been much prayer walking taking place, and as we prayed across the North-west, the North-east, East Anglia, London and the Midlands – we cried out ‘arise and shine’ over those regions, and the regions of Greater Manchester, Liverpool, the South West and the South East – ‘Arise, shine, for your light has come.’
We turned our prayers to the approaching coronation of King Charles III and the Monarchy, asking the Father what He wanted us to decree at this time, praying blessing over King Charles and as we prayed, standing guard over his faith. We prayed for the Royal Chaplains, to have the place to speak life and to have great wisdom within the Royal household. As we moved on in our praying, we recognised that there is very strong connection between Sovereign and those in Government, and we prayed ‘His Kingdom come’ for The Commons, The Lords, over our whole parliamentary system – for strength, boldness and truth and we called forth the Esther’s and the Joseph’s to lead with righteousness for our nation.
Our final part of the morning was praying for The Church – recognising that there are so many good things going on, with the preaching of the Gospel, Alpha courses, food banks and the recognition of Faith Communities for the part they play in society. We prayed too for the Church as it tries to navigate troubled waters with decisions needed on a whole number of different areas. We prayed for God’s mercy on the Church of England and for a release of life, repentance and salvation… again we prayed ‘Your Kingdom Come……’ and a release boldness, mercy and more of the Gospel.
In the afternoon we focussed on hearing the voice that is crying in the wilderness (Isaiah 40) and prayed for the voice of the church to be heard –a sense of finding your voice to elevate the lowly, remove stumbling blocks and crying out that the word of the Lord stands forever.
The day was of course framed in sung worship as we lifted up the name of Jesus over all the different nations and situations that we prayed for.
Laurence Sharman is the Operations Director for the World Prayer Centre.