Saturday, March 3, 2007

An Ordinary day at AHOP

It's been a week or so ago. I dropped into the Prayer House as is my custom. It was on a Tuesday morning I think. I try and drop in for 15 or 20 minutes when I can just to walk around in there and pray. Almost always there is someone else in there praying already and most often it is a student from Asbury College. On this particular day I asked the guy in there what he was hearing from the Lord. He had a ready answer-- written down-- apparently from earlier in the morning. He shared it with me. I asked him to send it to me written out so I could share it here. Here it is.

"David was a man after God's Heart, he would do anything the Lord asked him to do. Thats's what God wants from you. He wants your heart to be His, fully surrendered in love and obedience. "I am the lover of your soul, all you need and all you really want. I am your defense, your shield, your fortress, your protection. And I am your sword, your spear, and your victory. Won't you let me be these things for you? When I give you my heart, what is left of you is also from me. Your passions are from me. Chase Me, and I will lead you in pursuit of them. I gave you talents and passions to fulfill the plans I have for you. You can't do them without Me. The journey I have set you on will take you places you never thought you'd be and where you could never go without me. I am your provider and your banner of victory. Where I go, I want you to follow. I won't always keep you safe, but I will always keep you protected. Remember that I have purposed everything in your life so you could come into greater understanding of me and my Love. So when calamity comes your way, remember that it is for a reason, and to bring you closer to me. Be near to me and I will be near to you. Obey me and see your love for me grow. I know the plans I have for you. I want to take you there. Will you let Me? Obey me and do what I say and you will dwell in the House of the Lord forever. Amen"

Friday, March 2, 2007

March 1, 2007

Today we had a great Friday morning watch. This is a watch several of us have taken on as our little mission. Today we were joined by Isa and her band, who have been ministering among us the past few days. We had around 20 friends for the morning. The time was pregnant with the Word of God and with vision.

Our days are divided into 7 watches each running 3-4 hours. Watches are led by Watch Leaders and persons who pray into the watches are called Watch Keepers. One thing that has seemed clear to us from the start was the need to create a flexible and accessible way to participate.

Back to today-- couple of leadings during the time.

--The strong sense that Jesus is knocking at the door and that some power or principality is literally blockading the door shut. The leading to pray for door-keepers to open the door by the power of the Spirit and to hold it open.

--Clear sense that the Lord wants to sow the words, "Awake Sleeper! And rise from the dead and Christ will shine on you!" throughout our campuses. There is much lethargy and apathy. The Lord wants these words to go out in the Spirit and not in a spirit of religion which is condemning and shaming, but rather to be spoken in different ways such that they give life-- impacting people--living and active piercing words.

--Interesting vision of the Word of God being fired like flame tipped arrows from one campus to the other as "mercy-bombs." In this way they are able to navigate from high trajectories over walls, landing to send flames spreading inside.

Good stuff and very encouraging.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

February 26, 2007

"And afterward,
I will pour out my Spirit on all people.
Your sons and daughters will prophesy, (Joel 2)

Monday nights at the Asbury House of Prayer are quite extraordinary. Around 8pm people begin streaming into the room. Mostly they are college students but more and more we see seminary students as well. People also gather from the community and from various ministries in the area. Some nights, there is someone playing on a keyboard or a guitar and singing in a prophetically worshipful way. Tonight there was almost complete silence. No musicians. People were scattered throughout the room, kneeling, laying prostrate on the floor, sitting quietly. . . . . pouring over open bibles. . . . . . writing in small notebooks.

Intermittently, a voice would speak forth a scripture or a prayer, but mostly silence this night. it felt quakerish almost. then the voice of a young man began to stream a vision and words that he indicated were coming from the Spirit of the Lord. It was profound. It felt a lot like something you would read in the Acts of the Apostles. He was recounting a vision that felt a lot like Nehemiah. It had so much confirmation in it for what we sense the Lord doing in this prayer movement. He would speak a few lines-- as though he were reading it off of a scroll none of us could see. Then he would go quiet for a minute. A few minutes later he would have more, but it wasn't as though he was storing it up. It was as though the scroll was unfolding bit by bit and he was reading it as he saw it, unfiltered. My spirit literally lept with encouragement.

At one point he said he indicated the Lord was leading him to make a confession that he didn't understand but that he would be obedient to. He said something to the effect that on this campus the sin of Balaam's error had been committed and that it needed to be confessed and he proceeded to do so. That's something to ponder. Later he said that there had been walls built up that the Lord never intended to be built up and that he would tear down and that he would build up new walls in the places where he intended. Then he moved on to saying something like, "This is the Lord's encampment and he is going to visit it and make it more of his encampment."

It comported with what many of us have been hearing and gives us deep encouragement and joy in the Holy Spirit.

come Lord Jesus.

February 11, 2007

The story continues to develop in really rich ways. As we indicated before, Asbury College has been pursuing this work of unceasing prayer prior to our getting involved. As we discovered each other, a great spirit of co-laboring emerged. For some months now we have been meeting together on Monday nights for worship and prayer. In the most recent weeks we have been gathering in a new place. We have managed to secure what was formerly the Larabee-Morris Conference room, in the dormitory by the same name, as the new home of the Asbury House of Prayer. It's a perfect place. This is the place where the seminary originated-- the first building. Here is the place where the seminary crossed the street from the college. It was a moving scene just a few weeks back when a group of college and seminary students walked together from a College classroom over to the new prayer room at the seminary.

So we are finding our way forward together. Really we aren't finding our way. We are being led. There is such a spirit of prayer that seems literally to flow from the Word of God in these gatherings. This movement holds much promise and strikes many as the seedling of a treasured vision. Could it be the the old story of Asbury happening again in a refreshingly new way?

This text emerged last night in the meeting in the most profound and stirring way. It's from the Song of Songs.

See! The winter is past;
the rains are over and gone.

12 Flowers appear on the earth;
the season of singing has come,
the cooing of doves
is heard in our land.

13 The fig tree forms its early fruit;
the blossoming vines spread their fragrance.
Arise, come, my darling;
my beautiful one, come with me."

here we go. . . . .

September 11, 2006

On September7, 2006, a 24 hour a day, 7 day a week prayer movement launched on the Wilmore, Kentucky, campus of Asbury Theological Seminary. At 10pm E.S.T. on Monday, September 11, the Asbury House of Prayer officially opened in its temporary home in the Fletcher Prayer Chapel housed in the McPheeters Center Building on the campus.

We determined at the outset that our approach would not be to “fill slots” of one hour each for the 168 hours each week. Rather, we determined to create a more flexible structure which could accommodate varying levels of investment for participants, foster a more generous framework of accountability and more readily lend itself to communal participation and not just individuals sequentially exchanging places in a prayer closet.

Each day was divided into 7 Watches of 3-4 hours each. Watch Leaders were recruited with the responsibility of recruiting persons to participate in their assigned watch and to provide encouragement and pastoral guidance to these participants. An open invitation was extended to persons to sign up as watch keepers. Watch keepers commit to spending time in prayer in the Prayer House at some point each week within their chosen watch.

Participants from the Florida campus began signing up as Watch Keepers and located their efforts in the Prayer Room on the Orlando campus. As well, participants from all over the world via our Extended Learning Campus and our Alumni population began to sign up as Watch Keepers. Members from the Staff, Faculty and Administration have all joined into this crucial work of prayer.

Participation grew as dynamic expressions of prayer emerged from the prayer house. Significantly, this prayer effort systematically undergirded the work of PeaceMaking in our seminary as the leadership crisis unfolded around us.

One of the great serendepitys of the movement occurred at the mid-point of the semester. We were approached by students from Asbury College across the street informing us of a similar prayer movement which had been unfolding for the past year among their population. Upon discovering each other we both expressed desire to join our work. Coincidentally, they also worked under the name of the Asbury House of Prayer. Numbers of our students began joining in a Monday night prayer gathering with Asbury College students. Tremendous encouragement continues to issue from this growing shared movement of prayer.

more to come. . . . . .