During my time here at East Carolina University, God has given me a heart for two areas of ministry. Prayer and going downtown. I can trace the roots of both back two summers ago. It was in Michigan that God showed me the power of prayer, and the need to intercede for the lost and unreached. Driving through downtown Greenville upon arriving back, God began to constantly speak "Downtown, go downtown."
2 years have since passed. I've found myself pushed to the forefront of a movement of praying students and faculty. Where once I felt my prayers did nothing, I now saw God answering them, and I found myself inspiring others to pray. Last spring, after an eventful excursion to Panama City Beach, I began with CCF students to finally reach into the downtown party scene. I've only come across one other ministry that has dared to reach the unreached there.
This semester has been trying however. I lay awake late at nights, my heart burning with desire to continue to see more of God in these areas, to see more fruit, a bigger harvest. Three weeks ago, I contacted students in various ministries on campus to come together to pray for an hour. I contacted over 30 in over 8 different ministries. No one showed up.
The Friday nights I have been in Greenville, I've been asking different guys about joining me in going downtown, to show love, and have conversation with people about God. Of the guys I've talked to, none have been able/willing to go.
I've been disappointed by both instances. Like my voice is falling on deaf ears. With that weighing down on me, I travelled to the Boiler Room earlier tonight. The Boiler Room has been a huge blessing since God established the ministry back after a week of 24/7 Prayer on campus at East Carolina in the spring of 2009. The space is truly intimate, and I can always commune with God there.
Tonight while I was worshipping and praying during the 5 hour "Burn" I found myself needing to confess and lift up spirits of disappointment, as they weighed me down from truly worshipping. As I began to pray over this, I felt God give me this vision. I saw dry, barren, cracked soil, that nothing could penetrate. And I knew underneath lied these seeds that were unable to burst forth because of the hard soil. And then I knew in my heart what was needed was rain, to loosen the soil and allow the seeds to grow.
Immediately I felt God saying, "Pray for rain, Pray for my spirit to go forth." I've been unable to cultivate anything in either prayer or downtown because I was trying of my own power. I recognize now, that I cannot persuade men, only the Holy Spirit can.
I then began to pray and ask for the Sprit to go before me, and call hearts to pray, to call hearts to go downtown, and to open eyes to see what I see. As I prayed the Spirit began to show me a few people to personally talk to. I'm now praying for the spirit to move those people before I talk to them.
I'm going to pour less energy into emailing, tweeting, and facebook updates about prayer gatherings. I'm going to ditch the video idea I had unless God brings someone along to create one. From here out, I'm going to pray for God to call people, and follow His Spirit in where to pray for the rain to fall.
Father I'm letting you resume driving this movement, carry us where you will.