Bringing in the New Year
Dave Patty | January 2018
How did you bring in the New Year?
Just over 12 months ago, in the first hour of 2017, I joined a group of JV staff who took the first watch in the new online JV Prayer Room. We had set aside 2017 as the year of prayer for Central and Eastern Europe and were asking God for something that seemed impossible.
Almost 300 years ago a mission’s movement began among a group of refugees from the Czech Republic called the Moravian Brethren. In spite of the fact that they were fleeing intense religious persecution, God gave them a burden for taking the good news of Jesus Christ to the world. In the fall of 1727 they made an unusual commitment for a small community of just 600 people. They began a 24-hour prayer watch, with different believers praying each hour, even through the night, around the clock.
The prayer watch lasted a month, then 6 months, then an entire year. They began sending missionaries to places like Greenland, Russia, the West Indies and Africa. During the next 40 years this growing community accomplished more mission work than the entire Protestant church had done in the 200 years before.
Fueling these efforts was the prayer watch, which continued unbroken for a mind-boggling 100 years! Even today we know many details about this mission work because of detailed letters sent to those praying with updates and specific prayer requests.
Could something like that be possible in the busy rush of our day? We were inspired by these faith-filled Moravians. Our bold request was that God would mobilize 8760 hours of prayer (24 hours x 365 days) during 2017 for the work of Josiah Venture. An innovative online prayer room was built, a unique place where people would be led through an hour of prayer with specific and up-to-date requests from the front lines.
2017 is now behind us. What happened?
In mid- November it looked like we would not make it. In spite of the many hours that had been prayed, we were over 800 hours behind, and had almost 1700 hours to go before the end of the year. We intensified our efforts as a team and many of you joined us as well.
When 2017 ended we did our final count and found that 9026 hours of prayer had been spent standing watch for the work of Josiah Venture in the prayer room. We surpassed our goal by 266 hours. Praise God!
This is not the end – 2018 has begun. God has answered so many prayers and we are asking him for more. Would you take an hour “on watch” sometime this month, and pray for the movement of God and the ministry of Josiah Venture? You can find details at www.josiahventure.com/pray.
Thank you for joining us in asking God for the impossible,