While reading Army On Its Knees by Janet Munn and Stephen Court this week my passion for prayer was given a fresh infusion of Holy Spirit fire! The call to prayer as an inseparable and integral part of our mission is what fueled my vision to establish the 24/7 Prayer Room at Noarlunga Corps in Adelaide several years ago, leading to the publication of Divine Conversations. And it continues to fuel my vision to expand 24/7 prayer into my present location at Cranbourne Corps in Melbourne.
This passion for prayer that is stirring right across The Salvation Army globally, will be the catalyst for revival in our movement as we advance God's Great Commission on our knees!
I was particularly inspired by the inclusion of retired General Paul Radar's passionate call to every Salvationist to fully engage in prayer and mission at Westminster Central Hall in London, November 1994:
A Call to Prayer and Mission
God is calling our Army to prayer! He is calling us to urgent, prevailing prayer for the renewal of our love for Christ, a recommitment to our spiritual priorities in mission, and a clearer vision of his purpose for the Army as we approach the year 2000.
The Salvation war in which we are engaged is real. The enemy against whom we fight is powerful. But he is not invincible. Indeed, he was defeated at the Cross and exposed to open shame. Still, the battle rages on. Never has the conflict been more intense. Never has there been a greater need for prayer.
We rejoice in every evidence of a revival of prayer in our ranks - and beyond: prayer fellowship, prayer vigils, prayer marches, prayer support teams for musical sections, schools of prayer, nights of prayer, concerts of prayer and much more. In 100 countries around our globe the voices of Salvationists in prayer ascend to the throne of grace every hour, day and night. We are a praying Army. But let us confess that for all too many of us, prayer may quickly become a lifeless routine, an empty and powerless ritual, if it is not neglected altogether.
Let every Salvationist take a personal inventory of the place, priority and power of prayer in his or her own life. Do I have a regular time for personal and family worship and prayer? What is the place of prayer in our planning and programmes at our corps and centres? When do we pray? Who prays? With what expectation? With what result? Is God calling some of us to a specific ministry of intercession or spiritual warfare through prayer?
As General of The Salvation Army, I am asking that every Salvationist and every centre of Army activity consider making a specific commitment to prayer for the next 12 months. The nature of that commitment should be negotiated with the Holy Spirit. I seek a commitment beyond our present routines. Let prayer be more disciplined, more specific, more consistent...
...On our knees, let us look again at our own homes, our communities, and our world, careering out of control toward the next century. If you believe with me that God is calling his Army to prayer, then decide now to do something about it - and do it now, for Jesus' sake, and for the salvation of the world for which he died. Let us go forward - on our knees! - General Paul A. Radar, Westminster Central Hall, London, November 1994