"NOT ONE STEP FARTHER...": AN URGENT REQUEST FROM BISHOPS STEVE BREEDLOVE & QUIGG LAWRENCE
As this newsletter is being prepared for distribution, we are at a weeklong training session for bishops in the ACNA. The training has been intensive, the material, helpful, and the fellowship and camaraderie, rich. We are grateful to God for the wisdom and love we have received.
However, there is one missing ingredient in our week that hit both of us like a brick. We do not want to go one step farther until a solution begins to take shape. What are we talking about?
Every other bishop has come here with the support of a team of personal intercessors from his diocese that is praying for him frequently, daily. Additionally, as far as we know, every other diocese has a healthy and active intercessory team that covers every significant event in the diocese with prayer. The ACNA has set a strong example in having a team of intercessors who attend all its major functions for the purpose of praying throughout the meetings and praying with people one-on-one. Their prayer team, led by Rose Marie Edwards, prays for every bishop and his wife weekly. Every time a specific need from a bishop surfaces, the message goes out to the ACNA team and focused prayer begins.
We have neglected this critical ministry in our own diocese. We have known we should, and we have plans, but we have not raised this issue to the level of urgency that it bears. But the fact is the Kingdom of God advances through the work of the Spirit. We are in a real spiritual battle for the souls of men, women, and children in all we do. We ourselves, and our clergy, are front-line warriors subject to constant pressure from the enemy. Our families and the families of the clergy of our diocese are under consistent spiritual attack. Like one of the instructors here taught, “When you are consecrated as a bishop or ordained as clergy, Satan draws a large target on your back. He knows if he can take out the bishop or the clergy through spiritual defection or defeat, many people will be shaken in their faith and defeated in their own lives.”
In everything we do, it must be “not by might, nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the Lord.” So this is what we are praying and seeking for:
Bishops and Staff Personal Intercessors, a small group of intercessors who will faithfully pray for the bishops, staff, and other leaders of the Diocese.
DCH Intercessory Prayer Team: This team would pray for big events in the Diocese, and for leaders in times of need, but primarily this is the hub for a growing intercessory prayer ministry for the whole Diocese.
a. A team leader for the team who will develop, organize, and lead the DCH Intercessory Prayer Team, someone who knows the centrality of prayer, who prays, and who can lead a team well.
b. At least three or four other people to join the team to shape and develop this effort. In addition to the commitment to actually pray, we need strong organizational and communication skills built within this team.
c. A contact person for every church in our diocese who will mobilize prayer in his / her church. He / She should have the ability to recruit, coordinate, and activate a group of prayer warriors in each church.
Anyone who signs up to serve with either the Bishops and Staff Personal Intercessors or the DCH Intercessory Prayer Team needs to have a short written recommendation from his / her pastor.
Pray about this, and if God is stirring you, please listen to his prompting. Then . . .
Communicate your interest in helping, what specific role you’d like to consider.
Include your full contact information.
Please let us know what church you’re a member of and how long you’ve been active in the church.
Finally, please tell us a little about your experience in and calling to prayer ministry.
As we’re putting together the potential team, please ask your pastor to send in a brief reference letter that describes his confidence in your genuine Christian commitment, spiritual maturity, practice of prayer, and trustworthiness with sensitive information.
It’s hard for us to communicate in writing the urgency we feel about this ministry of prayer in our lives and in the life of our Diocese. At this moment, we sense we are further out into enemy territory than we want to be without solid prayer coverage and support. Please consider joining the team, and please don’t delay! We don’t want to take another step farther without you on the team!