pray without ceasing from Sustainable Traditions

"...pray without ceasing..." -1 Thessalonians 5:17

I’m not sure I’ve done a great job yet of fully explaining what Sustainable Traditions is about. And maybe because it is a vision bigger than my wife and I, that the LORD is only slowly unfolding to us. At the core of this project we are attempting to tap into a multifaceted work of the Holy Spirit – a convergence of streams that all lead to a fulfillment of the Gospel of Jesus with it’s final goal of GOD, our Creator, living with us in a world made new again. We know this work of renewal and redemption towards ‘the restoration of all things’ is centered in the person of Jesus and that we are invited to partake of his resurrection life- spirit, soul and body.

But this work of transformation in the world begins first in our own spirits as we give up our efforts to earn GOD’s favor and righteousness and accept it as a free gift through the reality of Jesus’  life, death and resurrection. His atoning ministry as the Great High Priest of humanity and the ‘First Born’ of the New Creation leads us towards a life of learning to be His disciples. As we are reconciled to GOD we are freed to spread this reconciliation and the outflow of His love to others and to all creation.

It’s sometimes easy to forget but critically essential-  the center of this work is a foundation of prayer. Nothing we do will bear eternal fruit if we do not first learn to abide in Jesus and always return to the reality that we are lifeless without the Life of GOD. Personal and corporate prayer are essential to this reality.

Years ago I had the privilege of being involved with the International House of Prayer (also known as IHOP or IHOPKC) in Kansas City, Missouri. It was a critical moment when they were finally entering into round-the-clock, 24-7  prayer after many years of merging prayer and worship in the prayer room. Today the decentralized prayer movement, with it’s many points of origin, is a global phenomena. Houses of prayer with a vision for laus perennis or continual prayer have sprung up all over the world. Prayer ministries abound and there seems to be a rising interest in prayer in all corners of the Church at large.

I was in Toronto for a youth conference one time and I met one of the speakers behind the scenes in a pre-meeting prayer session. At the time I believe he was only a pastor in the UK but since that time the LORD has used Pete Greig and his team of wild intercessor-activists to spearhead the creation of ‘boiler room’ communities and prayer rooms that are sweeping Europe and the entire world with new expressions of prayer and ministry.

From Pete Greig and the 24/7 Prayer movement comes a call to all of us – even those of us who struggle with prayer. This call is an urgent task for the hour: gather together to pray. This may sound overwhelming or you may not know where to start but the video below spells it out in simple child-like charm. Get your friends together and start a prayer room. Start for 24 hours and see where it goes from there.

Other resources:

Red Moon Rising: How the 24-7 Prayer Is Awakening A Generation by Pete Greig (I love, love, love this book!)

Punk Monk: New Monasticism and the Ancient Art of Breathing by Andy Freeman and Pete Greig (another fire-starter of a book!)

Resources for starting a prayer room.

If you are local to Lynchburg, Virginia come check out the Lynchburg House of Prayer.

J. Fowler

J. Fowler is the website editor and co-founder, along with his wife Pamela, of the Sustainable Traditions project. The Fowlers live with their seven children on a farm near the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia.

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