Sunday, August 13, 2006

Prayer Tune-Up

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It Seems To Me…
every congregation could benefit from a Prayer Tune-Up . . .

Every automobile I have ever driven has greatly benefited from an engine tune-up. Even so, it was many years before I disciplined myself to have my cars serviced on a regular basis … And I have paid for it through lower gas mileage and additional repairs from overly worn parts.

Congregations are no different; the greatly benefit from the regular review of leaders. And the ministry and mission of prayer in your congregation probably depends on you to initiate the process and point the way.

This tune-up check-list will help you think comprehensively, analytically, and practically. Add to it, customize it to your unique situation, but most of all, pop open the hood and start giggling the wires!

Refresh the Pastor
  • Prayer Summit -Pay the way for your pastor to experience extended prayer with others
  • CPLN Conference – Encourage your pastor to attend one of the Church Prayer Leaders Network Conferences; many have workshops designed specifically for pastors>
  • Resources – Gift your pastor with a book written by a praying pastor or provide a list of websites he/she can use for personal growth>

Review the Purpose
  • Survey the Leadership Team – asking them to identify the place and purpose of pray throughout the community and ministry life of the congregation. Distribute a report of their feedback at a meeting that allows for discussion and prayer.
  • Include in every church communication – Ask permission to have the mission or vision statement of the church augmented with the word prayer then for it to be visible in every church communication (letterhead, website, bulletins, newsletters, etc). For example: Augment To know God’s will and make Him known to Through prayer, to know God’s will and to make Him known.

Reinforce the Presence
  • Calendars – Add a prayer focus or idea to each day or to open dates
  • Bulletins – Add a weekly quote, insert a prayer bookmark or follow an Acts 1:8 cycle (Week #1 = Your Jerusalem (neighbors and communities), Week #2 = Your Judea (region and nation), Week #3 – Your Samaria (unreconcilied peoples and justice issues), Week #4 = The Earth (nations and global issues).
  • Newsletters – reprint an article from Prayer Leader Online (attach website information, please) or a quote on prayer.
  • Displays: Freshen-up bulletin boards, purchase new banners, replace items on display tables & exhibits
  • Library: purchase new books & tapes on prayer

Reinforce the Practice
  • Insert a creative prayer moment on Sundays – For example, ask the mission team to stand at their seat and invite several people to surround them as the pastor or prayer leader prays from the front.
  • Schedule a Concert of Prayer – Establish a compelling purpose for the gathering (a critical need or a community issue) and invite everyone’s participation.
  • Invite guest speaker on prayer – Consider a local leader recognized for their work or their passion for prayer, or consider a national speaker (both Jon Graf and me are eager to serve you in this capacity and cost may be less than you think).

Retrain the People
  • Workshop (onsite) – Schedule a 3 to 6 hour workshop that provides practical teaching for all members in the congregation
  • Conference (offsite) – with your pastor’s support, invite leaders to attend a regional or national conference
  • Resources (website) – use email to introduce lead4ers and members to helpful websites.

Recognize the Problems
  • Report to leadership - present your findings as to the strength and weaknesses of the overall ministry of prayer.
  • Invite a Prayer Coach – Invest in a consultant who can coach your leadership through the weaknesses.

Take the time to take your team through these steps and I guarantee better miles per gallon of prayer!

Phil Miglioratti in Prayer Leader Online

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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Phil, for something you said at Broadview recently, that changed the way I lead our church to pray. I don't remember what you said but I now thing differently. Bill Rorer