"But we will devote ourselves to prayer and the ministry of the word," (Acts 6:4)
I've read that verse a thousand times. I've studied and preached on this passage many times in the past. But it was only recently that I realized I was not devoted to prayer. I was interested in prayer and quick to acknowledge the importance of prayer. But I could not honestly say I was devoted to seeking the Lord in prayer.
I've been too self-sufficient and not desperate for the Holy Spirit to move in power in my church. And we are seeking to change together, I believe we've seen all the change and transformation we are going to see in our churches apart form a devotion to prayer.
Though other things seem more urgent, nothing is more urgent than prayer. It's often been noted that in the book of Acts there are a series of attacks against the effectiveness of the church. Persecution from outside the church comes first followed by division from within the church. But I also believe in Acts 6 we see another subtle attack against the effectiveness of the church: the distraction from prayer.
We are seeking to humbly ask the Lord to increase our devotion to prayer. One of the ways we are seeking to do this is our First Monday prayer meeting. On the first Monday of each month from noon until 1:00 pm we pray together. We seek the Lord to revive our city, our nation, and for the advance of the gospel in the world. We pray for more prayer. We pray the Lord would rescue us from self-sufficiency and prayerlessness.
When the church in Jerusalem had leaders who would not be distracted or sidetracked form prayer and the ministry of the word, the result in the city was amazing: And the word of God continued to increase, and the number of disciples multiplied greatly in Jerusalem, and a great many of the priests became obedient to the faith.
Rev. Brandon Dees Calvary, RM