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Why Discernment is Important:: 3


This week I’ve been sharing about the importance of corporate prayer in congregational life. Yesterday I made two observations, first, that prayer unifies the church with God’s purposes, and second, that prayer enables congregations to discover God’s direction for their particular church.

Today I offer a third and final observation, that being that corporate prayer energizes the church to accomplish more than it could ever imagine. Adoniram Judson is regarded as one of the founder’s of American foreign missions. Judson grew up as an ambitious young man with aspirations for wealth and success. As a young man, however, he was converted to Christ, a commitment that profoundly changed his life. Rather than seek fame and fortune, Judson’s new mantra became that of pleasing the Lord. In 1809, Judson joined a congregational church and became burdened to become a missionary. He found some friends with a similar sense of calling and frequently met with them for prayer on behalf of the salvation of “the heathen.” In addition to praying for the souls of those who lived on distant shores, the group also requested that God open doors of ministry as missionaries. That spot has been marked as the birthplace of missions in America.

On February 19, 1812, Judson sailed for Burma. When Judson left for Burma his set two simple goals. First, he wanted to provide the people with a translation of the Bible. In addition, he hoped to found a church that would grow to 100 members. Forty years later at the time of his death, Judson not only left the scripture translation; he left 100 congregations that served some 8,000 converts to Christ.

As I previously mentioned, no great movement of God occurs without prayer. We can do more than pray after we’ve prayed, but we can do no more than pray until we have prayed. My prayer for you today is that God will use you as a catalyst in your church to call people to pray for the next great movement of God.

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