Karen Sexton – UK
It started simply. Kevin and Emma’s desire to pray and intercede for those affected by a war beginning in Ukraine. A simple action taken – calling others to join in. A ripple effect of simple actions – people deciding to participate, rising early to pray with people we didn’t know, for people we didn’t know to begin our day. But, for all the things we didn’t know about each other, we gathered around one thing we did know – God’s redemption plan and power to transform – and, in that place, discovered sweet fellowship.
Day by day the Psalms guided our prayers. We praised God. We thanked him. We declared his word, his promises, his faithfulness. We recalled his mercies in days past and sought new mercies for the day ahead. We wept. We pleaded and petitioned. Voices rising and falling, passionate pleas for mercy and intervention, confident declarations of his promises, his power, his purposes, halting, stumbling prayers where words could not be found, interspersed with moments of silence. We prayed until we had run out of things to pray for and we prayed them again. We thought to pray about a specific thing only to find someone else was praying what was on our mind. With the Holy Spirit’s leading, our prayers converged, causing themes to rise, and like waves, the themes would rise and fall. As the days passed, our prayers turned toward bigger things – the nations, world leaders, godly wisdom and counsel to prevail in the midst of growing global uncertainty, revival.
We celebrated news of miracles – bullets and missiles missing targets, equipment failure and weather hindering enemy advances, provision of food and supplies. We celebrated news of hope and renewal – people coming to faith and discipleship classes starting in the midst of war, God’s people loving, caring and serving despite facing the upheaval of war themselves.
Our prayers revealed our own testimonies of God’s work in our lives. We quoted Scripture that were on our hearts, lyrics of old hymns, books and teaching that were important to our spiritual growth. We heard that displaced believers were joyful and still seeking and serving God despite their circumstances. They were being joined with believers from other regions through the devastation of war. New communities of God’s people were forming, some coming together to intercede & pray from afar, some coming together having fled devastation and destruction and still others joining in as they came to faith. In the midst of war and chaos, God was revealing himself in ways I had not known. I marvelled at its beauty. Something is stirring deep within me. I want to know more, see more. More, Lord. Show me more of your beauty. Over one hundred and thirty consecutive days of praying with others has changed me. I want to take this gift I have received and invite others to come and see, come and share in the sweet fellowship of prayer.