When you pray what are you praying for? This struck me the other day when I was reading an article about the Spanish flu epidemic that happened 100 years ago. In the article it said that after two years of people dying the virus became less virulent and people just got used to the fact that everyone winter there would be deaths from flu. But what stuck me was the article said “then there were the 1920s”.
Now the 1920s were a time of hedonism and loss of faith in God, that then ran into the Great Depression of the 1930s which gave rise, in Europe to Hitler, who in the early 1930s was seen as a hero who was rescuing German.
I was also reminded of the first time I heard John Mulinde speak. He said how in Uganda the prayer warriors prayed out the awful dictator, Idi Amin, only for the vacuum that his demise caused leading to an even greater dictator to take his place. His message was that we should be careful when we pray and not pray out something or someone but pray in something or someone so there is no vacuum.
But to pray something “in” we need to see God’s vision. As my husband reminded me “without a vision the people perish”. What is the vision of God for the future? Not just for our churches individual or corporate, not just for the UK but for the whole world. What is God saying that it should look like?
As I said in “Revivals!” blog, in the past when revivals have come pubs, cinemas etc have closed down, but our economy now depends very much on the hospitality industry. Those who work in hospitality are the ones who spend the money there, and who rent rooms and flats, buy clothes, etc, etc. I do not believe we can just say “God’s got a plan.” I believe there is power in prayer and that we need to be praying in that God given vision. But first of all we need to be asking God what that vision is.
I’m afraid at the moment I don’t know what it is, but (and here’s a book plug) I am hoping that when I receive Tom Sine’s book ‘2020s Foresight:Three Vital Practices for Thriving in a Decade of Accelerating Change‘ there will be things in there that will help we to see what God is planning, and how to pray into that.
Yes I do believe God can drop in the world vision as we seek it but I do also believe that we need to study, see the signs and get confirmation. Am I willing to put in the time? Are you willing to put in the time? Or is it just easier to pray out what we can see now like the virus/economic crash/dysfunctional governments/etc? If we do what will fill the vacuum?