What is the role of the Holy Spirit in dynamic corporate prayer?
At that first Prayer Summit I referenced earlier, I remember hearing Dr. Joe say something like, “We are not sure what we are doing here. We have done this a few times now, but that doesn’t make us experts. We are trusting the Holy Spirit to guide us as we go along. If we catch what He is doing we will all be changed. If we don’t catch it, well, we’ve had a nice time at the beach.”
Trusting in the Holy Spirit to lead a time of dynamic corporate prayer is the most important thing a facilitator can do. But, let me make it clear that I do not mean we should take an anything goes attitude. Being led by the Spirit of God encourages, not discourages, orderliness, careful and prayerful planning, and the use of wisdom, boldness, and restraint. But it also means that we do not come to a time of prayer locked into how each moment will be used, how each prayer will be prayed, or how each person will participate. We need to be open to His surprises. Often He will override our prayerful planning with something far better; something we never imagined. We could say we are engaged in planned spontaneity. We come with a deep desire to spend time with Him and a confidence that as we draw near to Him, He will draw near to us as well.
As I have had the opportunity to facilitate in a city that has had multiple, annual Prayer Summits, I often ask the question, “Who here has been to this Prayer Summit before?” Typically, more than half of the hands go up. Then I restate the question emphasizing the word, this Prayer Summit – meaning the one we are presently attending. The obvious answer is that none of us have been to this Prayer Summit before. The point is that if we view this time of dynamic corporate prayer as something that will be just like the last time of dynamic corporate prayer, we will tend to function on our own experience or thoughts and miss the beautiful place the Holy Spirit wants to take us.
As we consider this crucial part of facilitating, we should start with a confidence that the Holy Spirit wants to lead us, which is the topic of the next question.
*Blessed by Doing – Avoid all prayer ruts. Anticipate the Holy Spirit to bring freshness to your next time of corporate prayer.