We often go to Church with a preconceived idea of what will take place there. And some of us, if we didn't get what we expected, would be upset.
I was in a very special service once at a Camp Meeting, a man sat down at the piano to play and sing, and as he sang the song, scores of people came forward to the altar, with broken hearts and with worship, when he finished that song, he went on to another, and then another and another...and people got saved, got right with God, were filled with joy, etc. For a long time! Amen! It was exciting. But one thing that amazed me to this day was that a few families actually stood up and walked out in the midst of this wonderful work of God! You know why? They couldn't stand that things werent going according to "Plan" They were like, we didnt drive all the way out here to hear this guy sing, whe is the opening prayer, the sermon, the announcements, were leaving. And they missed out on what God had for them. Why? Because they really were in religion, they really were looking for the religious format that subscribed to, not the working of the Holy Spirit of Christ.....God does work thru preaching, opening prayers and announcements etc, BUT God can work however He sees fit and He is not isolated to our methods and schedules.
Some people think that if you pray for longer than five minutes, you might as well just quit, you are now just babbling on in vain repetition...I suppose they arent big on the old hymn "Sweet HOUR of Prayer"
In the few times that I have 'prayed thru' the initial resistance of the flesh, and gotten to really pray in the power of the Spirit, it has become so sweet and real and wonderful! So many people though, in the first few minutes of prayer, grow bored, tired, and leave. It is sad. It is hearthbreaking. It is heartbreaking to see that the hearts of so many ppl who say theyre Christians-are so hard and dull and desensitized!
ALL the old-fashioned revivals and great works of God had one thing in common, long, consistant, effectual PRAYER. There is no way around it. The Bible says to pray without ceasing, and many Christians don't pray longer for a few minutes and some dont even pray except for their food, if that.
There are so many deep, profound things for us to learn, but the starting point is going to be in your seeking God in prayer! This is a call to prayer, and fasting--for individuals and Churches everywhere!
15Blow the trumpet in Zion, sanctify a fast, call a solemn assembly:
16Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children, and those that suck the breasts: let the bridegroom go forth of his chamber, and the bride out of her closet.
17Let the priests, the ministers of the LORD, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, Spare thy people, O LORD, and give not thine heritage to reproach, that the heathen should rule over them: wherefore should they say among the people, Where is their God?