When talking about a “Pulpit Ministry” I hear potential pray-ers say things like, “But we will miss our preacher if we pray for him, while he is preaching. We love his teaching.”
Recently I was talking to a pastor friend of mine in Morven where he shared the following incident…mind you, this is a church with around 100 in attendance on Sundays…He shared the following:
It was the ladies week to pray while he was preaching and a couple of them had stopped going to their prayer room. But one lady in the pew saw another heading for the prayer room and said to herself, “Oh, I can’t let sister so-and-so pray by herself, I should go back there and join her.” Another woman in another part of the church saw the first one and said the same thing. Somehow, before anyone knew it, there were 6 (six) maturer ladies in that room praying up a storm.
After church a couple of them came up to the pastor and said, “Pastor, don’t take this the wrong way, but we had church in there!”
I have been typing portions of this to pastors, Bible study leaders, Sunday School teachers and others for the last 11 months, sharing with them what we do at Common Thread Ministries. Earlier this week I was asked again, this time by a pastor friend whom I have known for awhile, so I have decided to turn this in to a regular handout.
Please feel free to print this out (using legal size, 8 1/2 x 14 paper) and give it to whomever you wish. To get to the PDF simply click here.
First Baptist Church Dawson, Dawson GA
All Day Sunday Intensive Had a great time all day Sunday. There are some churches that I go into and JUST LOVE THEM! This was one of those. We had a great time! They were super friendly and grateful for my being there, and, of course, the lunch in the fellowship hall was brilliant! Many were moved by the desire to pray for their new pastor and his wife (even though they have not been found or called yet). They are starting a pulpit ministry this Sunday. Here are a couple of emails since Sunday:
Great day Sunday. Thanks for coming. People are still abuzz about the day.
Dear Mark…To be honest, I haven’t been faithful to a consistent, disciplined, prayer life.. I talk to God, I feel, most of the time, but at the same time a lot of these have been pretty selfish prayers…I am ready to move out…focus on God…live , really, what I teach…So I appreciate your prayers about this with me. I want to be in His will, not mine.
Mark, Thanks so much for coming to First Baptist Church in Dawson yesterday. What a blessing you were to my life and the life of our church…Our church has some great prayer warriors and I’m sure some of the prayer events you suggested need to be reactivated and will be. I hope and confidently expect you will be able to return to lead us further in prayer since I have lifted this need in prayer this morning to our Father. The Lord knows the need. I heard you mention Cuthbert and it isn’t far at all from Dawson, may have to journey over there to hear more from you…Thank you again for visiting with us and lifting our congregation up in prayer in the days ahead as we will your ministry. God bless and lead you.
Pray for this church as they search for a new pastor and develop into a House of Prayer.
JW in Georgia
I get so excited when I get emails like the one that came in yesterday. I spoke at this person’s church on Sunday, doing an Intensive which meant that Sunday night I spoke on “Ongoing Prayer Events” so, they are now starting a Pulpit Ministry. This reminded me of an email I rec’d from the same person a couple of days earlier:
Hello there MM! I was just working in one of your books. I was reading about Ezekiel’s vision and working on the questions afterward. I enjoyed your teaching. I wish we could have done a weekend seminar so that you could have spent more time on each topic. Do you do seminars? Just curious. I haven’t had time to check out your website, but I will! Thanks for the teaching yesterday!
Pray for this church as they begin this Pulpit Ministry.
JP in Georgia
I get so excited when I hear of other churches’ testimonies. I trust that this will thrill your heart too:
I was thinking about you yesterday and today when I saw your latest Issachar Men email. Just wanted to give you a little praise report about our Morven Mountain Movers Ministry (that’s what we are calling our Pulpit Prayer Ministry). It is going very well. The people are excited about praying on Sunday mornings and I get to tell them each week that their prayers are working and being answered. This month we have averaged 45 or better in Sunday School, we had 65 children and youth attend our VBS, two people join the church by letter, one baptism (a couple of more in two weeks), two new families starting to attend regularly, and this past Sunday we had over 100 people in church for morning worship! I know you’ve heard this testimony before from other churches who started a pulpit prayer ministry, but I just wanted to let you know what’s happening with us. Yes our offerings are up especially our missions giving and we are looking for new ways to minister and witness in our community. We’re praying about starting an ESL class with the hopes of planting a Hispanic church in our area in the not so distant future. Our Celebrate Recovery program is seeing new people just show up and people in the community are asking questions about the church, Jesus, and the Bible. One of our biggest prayers is that the light of Jesus will shatter the darkness in our community. I’ve been doing a little devotional on Sunday mornings at a local farming business for the workers, and this week a couple from Florida showed up to do some shopping and I invited them to join us for our devotional. Afterwards, the wife told me that them coming was not an accident, she’s been trying to get her husband to hear some preaching from somewhere. Didn’t get a chance to witness, but I know the seed was planted. One prayer request from us. We need a youth Sunday School teacher. We’ve got a small group being promoted this year to the youth and we need a teacher. If you will, please remember this need sometime this week. I know the Lord has someone picked out, we just need that person to realize they’ve been called and step forward.
God Bless you this week and the rest of the summer, it looks pretty busy (Amen!). Holler back when you get a chance and if you are in the Morven area, stop in and lets pray together.
During Dr. Stanley’s first visit to Martha’s Vineyard we had a group of men that prayed all night for him the first night and prayed on a conference call the second night, while he was speaking. Upon returning he told the men at Sons of Thunder (the men’s prayer ministry at FBA), that the message somehow seems to “stick better when you are praying while I am preaching.” With that in mind, read this pastor’s testimony. Pray for his Pulpit Ministry team, that they would continue with great enthusiasm.
Wanted you to know that the Pulpit Prayer Ministry has been huge! God’s power has been so evident in our worship and in the preaching of His Word. I have sensed a receptivity in people that is unlike anything I have ever experienced in ministry! Thanks again for your ministry to our congregation. We are continuing to pray for you as you go out!
JA in Georgia:
I heard from this pastor on Tuesday, telling me how well the Pulpit Ministry went and then a couple of days later got this email from one of his congregation, that was in the pulpit ministry this week. I received this email from one of the churches I was in recently. This was a report from their pulpit ministry. This week it was the ladies in the prayer room, praying during the service:
Our prayer time was a blessing…We had 3 1/2 people, the half being a 7 1/2 year old daughter of one of those praying. Let me tell you that it doesn’t matter that she is only 7 1/2 years old. She did herself some praise and prayer. It was such a blessing to know there is hope for those coming after us.
Our time went very quickly. One of the ladies told the preacher she didn’t know what kind of service they had but the Holy Spirt was very present in his office, where we prayed for him. Thank you for sharing your time and knowledge with us, I am excited to see how God is going to bless as we grow in our praying.
Pray or these folks as they are just starting a pulpit ministry.
TC in Georgia:
This is an email I received from a pastor whose church I spoke in a few weeks ago. Note what he realized in this, namely, the praying for those in the service, as well as for the preacher.
Our pulpit prayer ministry has admittedly gotten off to a slow start. After a couple of weeks with no one praying during the Sunday morning service, this past Sunday a couple of my deacons took up the mantle and prayed for me during the service. I discerned a noticeable difference in the presence of the Spirit with me.
But, the best result was that the message really seemed to touch people on a deeper level than usual. I had one lady — who I don’t ever remember telling me she enjoyed one of my sermons — make the effort two days later to tell me how much she enjoyed the message, and that “if people weren’t moved by that they must have a very cold heart.” From this, I am learning that one great advantage of a pulpit ministry is not just to beseech the Lord on behalf of the preacher, it is also to implore the Spirit to give the congregation “ears to hear.”
Pray for these folks as they try to re-invigorate their pulpit ministry.
CM from Georgia
Hi Mark! Just a note to let you know how very much we enjoyed the three sessions Sunday at Morven Baptist Church. It was just awesome, I could have listened for hours…..and when your phone beeped at 7:14 Sunday pm service, that was the icing on the cake [I was teaching "Ongoing Prayer Events" this evening, with the 714 Team being one of them]. The work that you are doing for our Lord is so great…and Praying and being better Prayer Warriors is all of what we have been into at Morven Baptist Church….we are so blessed to have Bro. Jim [their pastor].
The ladies start [the Pulpit Ministry this] Sunday and everyone is so excited….and their is a humbleness in the air about it.
God Bless you and your sweet wife as you Press On in your Ministry. We will surely continue praying for yall.
In Christian Love,