Thursday, May 28, 2009

Praying, walking, and listening with a mission to bless

All over the world supernatural movements of prayer are being led by the youth of the church. No need for any type of formal training or degree just a pure heart and desire to follow Jesus. This movement of prayer,which people are calling a "Treasure Hunt," is like prayer walking with a mission to listen to God and find people who need God's love and healing. They are called "Treasure Hunts" because God's treasures are people and he leads prayer seekers to them via nudges, clues, and impressions from the Holy Spirit. (Sound crazy? Learn more about listening to God in this way by watching this video.

Now, I have to admit when I first heard about this I was skeptical for two reasons. First, I wondered if this was just another Christian fad. Would this launch into a formulaic program branded with t-shirts, coffee mugs and key chains only to be quickly forgotten for the next "outreach strategy?" And second, is this truly real? Does God speak with clues of who we should pray for, what to pray for, and where we should go?

Today if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts. Hebrews 3:7-8

So I started reading, learning, and experimenting. I met with a trusted friend from college who pastors in Berkeley and was experiencing God in this way. He told me stories where his church would pray and God told them things that lead them to walk all over the city.

God even spoke specific names of people walking down the street where God would instantly reveal specific life needs of the people they met. Can you imagine someone walking up to you and saying, "I know your name, what's going on in your life, what kind of pain you have, and I want to tell you God loves you and wants to bless and heal you!"?

Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know. Jeremiah 33:3

That's the kind of God that loves us. It's a perfect example of what PCC is learning through Revelation. God is a God of supreme power and His will is to draw all people, tribes, nations, and languages to himself through Jesus. So since January I've been experiencing God regularly in this way, like I have never before.

Last week, specifically, there were three days when groups of PCC young adults and students went praying through Redwood City. One experience went like this: My small group of men met at PCC's campus and asked God specifically to tell us who and what to pray for and where we should go in Redwood City to pray. All six of us took about ten minutes separately to talk and listen to God. We had paper and jotted down what it seemed God was saying to us, no matter how unusual. Then we came together and shared what we heard.

It was undeniable that almost each of us had heard God tell us to go to Sequoia Station because we each had
written down a location in that area. We continued to share other things almost seemingly random like, "white shirt, post-it notes, books, hurt left leg, freedom from alcohol, man on bench," and even names of people. It sounds unbelievable but as we compared notes it seemed that God actually gave us the name of someone: J____, a location, an appearance, and things she would need prayer for. This was our "Treasure Map." I have to tell you, it was so exciting. I just asked God for faith to be led in His powerful ways.

And it is impossible to please God without faith. Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him.
Hebrews 11:6

We split up in two groups of three and drove to Sequoia Station. Within five minutes of arriving we were praying with people. My group arrived in Safeway, in the aisle that has both "books and post-it notes." We waited and asked anyone and everyone who came down that aisle if they needed prayer. We prayed for people who needed jobs, had illness, and we prayed for a woman in a wheel chair who had a "hurt left leg." When we showed her our list of things we were looking for she looked at us as if we had just revealed she won the lottery. Amazing.

So as we were just about to leave that's when we saw HER. We spotted a twenty-something girl wearing a white t-shirt and we felt God tell us SHE was J_____, the name he gave us. So in faith we tapped her on the shoulder and asked, "Is your name J____?" She nodded her head yes. You can imagine the look on her face. But she was completely stunned when we told her what we were doing and how we found her. We told her our mission for the night was to ask God to lead us to people he wanted to bless and heal. She was freaked out, as were we. Could this really be happening? We showed her our "treasure map" with her name on it, white shirt, and other things. We asked what she needed prayer for. At first she said, "Nothing, really." So we said we would just pray for God to bless her. Then one of they guys in our group, being nudged by God, said, "Are you sure there's nothing specific?" That's when she told us she had faith at one time, but now she was a single mom, pregnant, and dealing with substance addictions. We got to speak God's love over her, pray healing and protection for her unborn child, and encourage her to find help. It was amazing, right there in the entrance to Safeway. God is not done with J____, and God is definitely not done with me. I'm still learning to listen and loving what I'm learning.

Starting next Thursday June 4th, one of our young adults will be leading a weekly Treasure Hunt: prayer walk with a mission to listen to God, bless our city, and find people to pray for. Every Thursday anyone is welcome to join, learn, practice, and step out in faith to listen and follow God on the ultimate hunt for His treasure. Meet at 6pm in the courthouse plaza across from the Fox Theater. Anyone is invited. That's any one, untrained, unprofessional, inadequate feeling person who just simply loves God and wants to follow Jesus to join on one of the ultimate treasure hunts. It's an adventure and definitely not a fad that's going out of style.

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21.

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