Enrique spent the morning praying to the Lord to provide him the needed $3 to make the round trip into the city to attend the church planting training session that afternoon. When it was time to board the bus, he only had enough money to make the trip in, but not enough to get back home. He went ahead and went out to the highway to await the bus. A fellow believer "happened" to pass by and Enrique's prayer for the needed money was answered. He was the first to arrive for the training even though he had come the farthest.
This afternoon's session was the "O" of "c.O.s.e.c.h.a" (harvest.) It is the prayer module of our church planting training. I had come prepared with a full afternoon of teaching and activities on the importance of prayer to church planting.
The first item we covered was that it is God's will that "none should perish." Everyone was asked to write down the names of all the family and friends they knew who are not yet believers. We went over the "3 steps" of how we should pray for the lost and I even prayed a short "model prayer" illustrating what we had just gone over making sure everyone present knew how to correctly pray for the lost on their list. I had planned about 15-minutes for this activity and was ready to wrap it up and move on to all the other important prayer points I intended to cover during our training session.
I was already on the next item when Enrique raised his hand and full of emotion in his voice and on the verge of tears began to tell us about two of the people on his list. I patiently waited for him to finish so I could continue my teaching on the prayer module, but Enrique begged us to stop right then and there and pray for their salvation. Before he was through speaking, Matias interrupted and shared his burden for 2-3 on his own list. At that point I lost control of the training session. My "model prayer" and teaching up to that point was absolutely nothing compared to the heartfelt praying and crying out to God that ensued for most of the remaining time.
No, we never got around to really dealing with all the "prayer tips" I had intended sharing. Several pages of great prayer materials and teaching on prayer were layed aside, but boy was there some genuine heartfelt praying for the lost!
Why am I so "content oriented" and think that information is what it is all about? Is my teaching on the subject of prayer what matters, or is praying itself what really matters? When was the last time I shed a tear for a lost person? How burdened and heartbroken am I for the hopeless souls around me? Am I able to fill out a whole sheet of paper with the names of lost family, friends, co-workers and cry out to God in passion for their salvation?
Today the students taught the teacher the prayer lesson.