In less than two weeks, the Father’s House of Prayer will hold our first regional Worship and Prayer Gathering of 2018 on March 24 (visit this page for more details). Our vision is to unify believers in our region to pray and to encourage one another in the Lord.
Throughout the year, we will rotate gatherings between Sylva, Waynesville and Franklin, joining with the Fig Tree of Waynesville (where I also lead worship weekly) and MyHOP WNC/Burn 24/7 Smokies in Franklin. We are grateful to join in intercession with these like-hearted ministries in our region.
New Meeting Space
I have yet to share about our new meeting location in the midst of our transition. FHOP began meeting in a new space in our town last month. It is actually in a store–and the store is still being used as well! It’s quite the different arrangement from most churches and ministries, but we are a house of prayer after all.
We meet after closing hours of course, although the shop’s owner is a believer who also wants worship happening in the space as much as possible, even during her shop’s business hours. She has a heart to reach others with salvation and healing, and has many testimonies of just that as people open up to her when they visit the store. Wow!
Our transition–still somewhat in process–has been quite good, though with the usual bumps and figuring out of details. We’re currently trying out a second spot for our worship team, and hope to have workshops to equip prayer leaders and worshipers for future gatherings.
Our Refined Identity
God has been refining FHOP’s identity as a ministry over the years, especially in the last few. It has been a labor in intercession and a process of great trust and pruning at times. I am so excited for what the Lord has to come!
God has shown us we are truly a regional house of prayer. We are no longer defining ourselves as a church and are not attempting to fit a mold we are unable to, such as trying to provide services and ministries for which we do not have the means.
Our assignment has been refined as a focus on worship and prayer, and equipping the Body of Christ. We want to see believers in our region connected with God’s heart for prayer and worship, which is the foundation of all else we do as a people. In Isaiah 56:7, God declared the name of His own house would be a “house of prayer.” This is also mentioned in Matthew 21:13, Mark 11:17 and Luke 19:46.
We should probably take note of what Father God Himself called His house. He didn’t say we would be a house of evangelism, service or missions, but a house of prayer.
He also called His house “a house of prayer for all nations.” This shows that we cannot leave out the other aspects God calls us to do. Nonetheless, as Jesus’ overturning of the tables in the temple demonstrated (John 2:13-17), prayer–intimate conversation with God and connection to Him–had to be first place for the other elements of the Kingdom to be rightly sustained. And Jesus was consumed with zeal over our relationship with Him being first place, wow!
Prayers for the Journey
As we grow in walking out this vision, I ask you to join in praying for us and those who are with us. Pray for us to be equipped with the firm foundation God desires: in intimacy with Him, in prayer and worship, and as leaders and examples to others.
Pray the vision will be made plain to all involved, so each one of us are able to walk it out free of hindrances. And that through it all, we will keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our faith.
Also, let me know how I can pray for you! As an intercessory missionary, prayer is definitely a big part of what I am passionate about!